Friday, 23 March 2012

spatial awareness

installation-in-progress - mrll 2012
I spent last week in Fredericton, NB installing my show, The Sky is Always Moving, at the UNB Art Centre Gallery.  I was in the East Gallery, which has these dark charcoal walls that were perfect for showcasing the work - I used natural dyes for everything, so the colours are soft and muted. 

This was my first experience with installation work - the show includes photography, mixed media sculpture, and video projection.  For the video I collaborated with Julie Scriver, who did some wonderful choreography, my fiancé Devon Ross who (along with helping me install the show!) composed and performed the music as well as performing the choreography along with Celine Gorham.  An example of the materials I used for this show:  plaster, plywood, cotton, silk, felt, handmade paper, antique lace, and found pointe shoes.  :)

still image from the body cage (your body holds you back) - monica lacey 2012
The exhibit grew out of a personal introspection where I was thinking back on my long history with dance.  I grew up studying ballet, modern dance, and jazz, for many years, and then stopped taking classes in my early twenties, but would go out dancing regularly to live music.  But then for several years I just wasn't dancing at all, not even in my living room.  And I missed it.  And I wanted to know why I wasn't dancing.  So I started asking myself some questions about the nature of dance, and then opened it up & began talking to other dancers, both trained and recreational, and the responses were really interesting.  

all the reasons why (detail) - monica lacey 2012

Everyone had something to say about dance and about why you might engage in it or not.  I then distilled the answers I was given, combined with my own, and worked out three sections to the exhibit that offer a perspective on why one would resist the natural human urge to move to rhythm:  part 1. the body cage (your body holds you back); part 2. the heavy heart (your heart weighs you down); part 3. the haunted mind (your thoughts exhaust you).  I recently received a Creation Grant from the PEI Council of the Arts to continue and expand my work on this project, so I'll be adding to it and evolving it.  The exhibit at the UNB Art Centre runs until April 20th.

the haunted mind - monica lacey 2012

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