Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Dancing Muse

Wanted to share this article with y'all from Bomb Magazine online. Many of the DiverseWorks dance junkies should remember Michelle Boule who danced in Donna Uchizono's Approaching Green and Miguel Gutierrez and the powerful People's Difficult Bodies at DiverseWorks a couple of years back. Last year she performed with that same show with MG&PP at Austin's Fusebox Festival (going on now! check it out.) She also has danced in Deborah Hay's work If I Sing To You that I saw at the 2008 Melbourne Festival.
In all of these works (and in real life), Michelle is outstanding. I love how in the article she talks about her own growth through others' work, the intersections of dance/theater and developing her own choreographic voice.
Can't wait to see what she's up to next.

Thinking Big & Planning Accordingly

We’re thinking big and planning accordingly. DiverseWorks has recently launched a strategic planning process that will chart the organization’s course for the next three to five years. With financial support from the Houston Arts Alliance and the Andy Warhol Foundation, DiverseWorks has hired Callahan Consulting for the Arts to facilitate a planning process that is national in scope. This process will involve input from staff, board, artists, funders, audience members, and collaborative partners in an effort to focus the organization’s energies around mission-driven goals and plans for managed future growth. What this really means is that we get to set aside time to really talk about what we do and why we do it. DiverseWorks was founded to serve artists. 27 years later, service to artists remains at the core of what we do. We’re excited about what the next 27 years holds for our organization, for the arts in Houston, and for our national cultural growth and evolution. We see this strategic planning process as a time for both introspection and serious brainstorming regarding DiverseWorks’ role in the national arts ecology. We’d love to hear from you regarding things you love about DiverseWorks, things you would like to see more of, or things you think we could do better. Let us know what you think. Believe me, we’re listening.

Diane Barber
Co-Executive Director & Visual Arts Curator
DiverseWorks ArtSpace

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Dreaming of Texas

Dreaming of Texas 19 April 2010

The idea of Texas has been firmly etched in James and my memories since 2005 when we began talking and thinking about Westerns. It seemed to occupy a space in both our minds and it seemed so familiar….heat, long shadows, cowboys and fake blood. Despite never having set foot in the US, let alone Texas we made a show about Westerns, or rather, a show about the memory of an imagined Western.

The first word of the piece is “Texas”. Every time we perform the piece it’s in Texas (where else could it be?!), so we wondered what would happen when we did it in Texas for real. In the show Texas has always been a faraway TV screen, in the same way the blood is made from ketchup and the scenes are generic and the guns are just the audience making gun shapes with their hands and shouting ‘peow’. Now the eruption of the Icelandic volcano has stopped us travelling I can really feel the 3000 miles between us and the real thing (if, in fact, it is real. All my favourite Westerns were filmed in Spain, masquerading as the Wild West).

It seems ironic that we were/are so close to performing in Houston and Austin, but we can’t quite make it over- first our visas didn’t arrive in time, then the Icelandic volcano stopped all air travel in and out of Europe- so Texas is still on the horizon but all we can do it imagine how it is, and we imagine it to be hot, dusty, all the men are cowboys or undertakers or bartenders or law men. We keep drifting into Westerns.

So we’re still here, on the other side of the Atlantic with our suitcases packed, trying to get to the place we’ve been thinking of for so long, waiting. Maybe Texas is destined to be only a memory for us, but I hope not. We want to say “Texas” at the start of the show and mean it for real this time.

-Gemma (pictured above)

Action Hero is Gemma Paintin and James Stenhouse. They are UK based artists making performance. www.actionhero.org.uk

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Hey Folks,
The Yes Men are coming!! That's right, the fly in, all that's wrong w/ the world's, ointment will be setting up shop(for five weeks) at DW...
And we need your help! We need 3 male Mannequins ( which are not easy to come by apparently). Oh, and with heads! If any of you have any leads PLEASE contact Jon: jread@diverseworks.org

Also.. We are having a painting party on April 18th+19th. Its going to be a blast. Trust me! We'll be painting the entire from black to white.
There's nothing like it. Again, if you are interested, drop me a line.

Jon Read
Operations Manager