June 4 | 4PM
Somewhere between fractions
This solo work impossibly attempts to perform the self. As the performer, I am aware of all facets of my lived and living experience. The title hints at recognizing how this performance is an iteration of the whole. Or, how can I fully embody all facets of myself?
The foundation of the work is centered on experiences from the social need to define me as a queer, immigrant, with a binational identity. While paired with Gloria Anzaldúa’s theories and work of “a borderland methodology,” it is the investigation of intersectionality. It is through that that the idea of a choreographed body is introduced, challenged, and expanded. I challenge myself with: How do I un-choreograph the performing body? Rid it of its embodied notions? I am grappling with how to navigate what and how I am viewed by others. I challenge the audience. How do you unsee? How can you see without tying it down to definitions?
Seemingly unparalleled themes offer a sense of disconnection (or connection), for example: between music and movement. I investigate and restructure the meaning-making of embodying. The exploration of how to undo the connection and interpretation with the audience/viewers. It is through performing in a “performance space” that I look to undo the work and what is being socially consumed with an egalitarian notion of “performance.”
This work is based on the self and it is developing a practice of undoing and channeling defiance to what is “known” or “comfort.” As stated in the beginning, “impossibly attempts to articulate and move through intersectionality,” this is a work that does away with product based demand on an artistic practice that learns in the act of performance/living.
Madeline Maxine Gorman
GRIDLOCK Dance invites you to join them for a performance that reflects on voyeurism, capitalism, and the myth of American exceptionalism. Choreographed by Madeline Maxine Gorman, one of our inaugural Atlas Arts Lab Fellows, this show features new and existing work, including the premiere of two intimate duets and a dynamic group piece set to an iconic ABBA song.
In Australia, they use an expression called “Tall Poppy Syndrome.” This occurs when people are attacked, resented, disliked, criticized, or cut down because of their achievements. The Tallest Poppy, a study led by Dr. Rumeet Billan, reveals the consequences of this silent systemic syndrome and the impact it has on women and gender minorities in the workplace.
In Japan, a similar common expression is “the nail that sticks up gets hammered down.” In the Netherlands, they say “don’t put your head above ground level” (boven het maaiveld uitsteken), with the cultural phenomenon known as Maaiveldcultuur.
I heard a similar expression growing up in Maryland called “crab mentality.” The metaphor is derived from a pattern of behavior noted in crabs when they are trapped in a bucket. The crabs fail to escape because they keep pulling back any crab that manages to get to the top.
I want to explore this idea using metaphors of capitalism, the myth of American exceptionalism, and the idea of “quiet quitting” that has become a buzzword in recent months. Since the onset of the pandemic, an issue of our time has been the relationship between work and self. I’m interested in exploring how media influences our understanding of work and how that impacts individuals and groups, particularly women and gender minorities.
I envision this piece being dynamic, fast-paced, and introspective, inviting the audience to consider and examine their own relationship with work and how it impacts their self-image.