Art in Conversation
"My ghosts are not gone, they are dancing in the shade" - Ibeyi
“Sometimes in life confusion tends to arise and only dialogue of dance seems to make sense.”
― Shah Asad Rizvi
Art is a vehicle to explore, investigate and understand concepts beyond ourselves. 'Art in Conversation' is a project I created to connect audiences to the art they are viewing. The series I present allows the audience to witness my creative process. I use work-in-progress showings to facilitate a dialogue where the audience gets to ask questions and interact with the artist.
This project is a form of arts advocacy where I blend entertainment with education to cultivate an appreciation for artists and speak on why the arts matter in our communities.
People care about things in which they can relate to
Art isn’t good or bad, it exists. I believe creative expression is a form of communication that universally connects us to the human condition. We all have stories to tell and movement is the primary medium I use to create narratives. I am passionate about sharing my creative process because I believe that art is a learned skill. It is a way for us to explore, investigate, and heal collectively. As a social conscious artist, I am dedicated to creating work that serves to initiate conversation. I believe social change starts within. My work serves to protest injustice, proclaim life’s gifts and provide for my community.
Collaborate with me!
Rewriting History: a black ancestral narrative
Recently, I collaborated with Brooklyn based artist Fabiola Jean Louis. She was an artist in residence at Lux Art for her Rewriting History: a black ancestral narrative exhibit. I was commissioned by the museum to creates a solo work in response to her work.
My solo work "was inspired by these vintage ghostly photographs displayed here.
I collaborated with songstress Erin Vanderhyde who sang "You'll never walk alone" and danced to "Ghosts" by Ibeyi.
Santeria: Story of the Orishas
I began to choreograph this body of work in 2017. I was initially inspired by the the music of twin artists, Ibeyi. They combine contemporary sounds with traditional afro-cuban hymns. I wanted to learn more about afro-cuban dance and collaborated with Irene Pulli. She is an afro-cuban dancer and helped me bring the essence of the afro-cuban aesthetic into my choreography.
Learning about the culture, religion and dance style inspired me.
I visited Cuba in 2019 to further my understanding and dive deeper into my work . I wanted to immerse myself into the afro-cuban culture. While in Cuba, I studied with Raices' Profundo and learned the dances of Yemeya and Oshun.
The orisha's make up the seven powers of Santeria. So far I have choreographed 3 sections: Ellegua, Oshun, Oya and each section is inspired by the story of an orisha (a god)
I plan to choreograph 4 more sections that are influenced my trip to Cuba. They will be the remaining stories of the orishas.