The Thickened Thin

The Thickened Thin is a solo rooted in performing its progression.

Connecting with the more-than-human audience as a practice of personal healing began at the onset of the pandemic, in an exile out of urban and social life that offered an unexpected opening in my artistic practice.  Withdrawing from the city to the desert of New Mexico, in a studio seemingly alone, the appearance of other energies permeated my solitude. Effort to find original movement vocabulary shifted to responding to the energies of Ancestors, Elements and Spirit. As I partnered with these unseen realities in presence, questions around grieving practices, transmutation and the possibilities of creating new futures arose and drove the creative process. What do the dead want from us? What new ways of loving and belonging are offered when we take on the mind of the mycelial realm? Unearthing past traumas- personal, ancestral and collective- and the integration of somatic practices from my graduate work in movement therapy and trauma studies became the crossroads of enlivened dialogue.  

The Thickened Thin de-centers the human gaze and gathers information from the audiences of Spirit, ancestors and elements. Some of the terrains the ritual has been performed: the shore of Long Beach, New York;  Holderness Cemetery, New Hampshire; Williams Grove at Humboldt Redwood State Park in Northern California; under the McDonough Oak in City Park, New Orleans, Treptower Park, Berlin.   On occasion,  the work is performed with the witness of the human gaze, to chart its course relationally as the artist comes home to an audience that is at once familiar and always complicated.

In the work, the artist asks:  Who are my relations? Can physicalizing an archeology of the past provide a way into the present that opens up other possibilities of relating to time? Can an animist perspective be truly embodied when we live in a cultural milieu that insists that human beings are the only beings worth attending to? 

I am a childless mother, and She is my son. 
Investigating ancestral memories, personal history, and gendered extractions, this work transforms a body into other dimensions outside of capitalist and colonialist regimes.  A pyscho-physical ritual seeks to inhabit a new reality. How do the elements of wind, earth, and water; tree and plant life; insects and birds bring us towards a broader sense of the collective, a radical love for all existence? Engaging in the (he)art of resistance, I bind myself to change in this work, enjoying the effort of reach and the pleasure pain of things falling apart.  I hone the gift of exile and resist the fear in desiring inclusion. Can the queer sense of belonging- trusting that our chosen kin, rather than blood family- become our new reality? 

Running time: 28 minutes
Logistics : sound file provided, option of performing with local collaborative live musician. Indoor or outdoor possible. Audience is invited to lie down and experience the work as a meditation