Simone Forti Performance: An Evening of News Animations
An Evening of "News Animations"
and Some Other Things with Participants of the Body Mind World Workshop
The Ship Gallery is proud to host a rare visit to Portland by Simone Forti, dancer, improviser, and one of seminal figures in the group of innovative movement artists comprising the Judson Dance Theater of the 1960s.
Forti's "News Animations" translate the imagery and language of newspaper reports and newscasts into movement compositions to address what is going on in the world and how it can animate art, the civic space, and lived experience. As Forti describes it:
"Improvising moving and speaking, patterns of language and body in motion play off each other sparking questions, silences, speculations and bursts of energy as personal experience interweaves with the flickering, fluid vision of the world brought to us by the news media."
Simone Forti is a dancer/choreographer based in Los Angeles. In 1955 she began dancing with Anna Halprin who was doing pioneering work in dance improvisation in the San Francisco Bay Area. After four years of studying and performing with Halprin, Simone moved to New York City. There she studied composition at the Merce Cunningham Studio with musicologist/dance educator Robert Dunn who was introducing dancers to the work of composer/philosopher John Cage. In these classes she met and began her association with choreographers including Trisha Brown, Yvonne Rainer, and Steve Paxton. In the spring of 1961 she presented a full evening of what she called Dance-Constructions, at Yoko Ono's loft studio. These pieces were seminal to the Judson Dance Theater that revolutionized dance in New York in the1960s and 70s.
In the 1970s Forti's improvising was anchored in observations of animals' movements, both for varieties of ways of moving, and for what she came to think of as the roots of dance behavior. She has often performed in collaboration with musicians, including Charlemagne Palestine and Peter Van Riper. In the early 1980s Forti started improvising speaking while moving. Working with newspapers, she began performing News Animations, giving expression to images, memories and speculations sparked by the news media. Last March Forti did three performances of her News Animations at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.
Forti has performed and taught throughout the US, Canada, Europe, and in Japan, Korea, Australia and Venezuela. Her work has been shown in venues ranging from Danspace Project in New York, Seibu Theater in Tokyo, Galleria L'Attico in Rome, and REDCAT and the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. She has received various grants and awards including a 2005 Guggenheim Fellowship in dance and a 2011 Yoko Ono Lennon Award for Courage in the Arts.
photos by Sally Stein & Jason Underhill
The Ship Gallery Studio (View)
2512 SE Gladstone
Portland, OR 97202