Figures in the Field III

Work by JoAnna Mendl-Shaw at Texas Hillside, Aubrey Texas, 2008. Photo by Janet Johns

Year: 2018-2019
DanceForce Member: Jim Self
Artists: D. Chase Angier, Rik Daniels, Jeanne Goddard, Norm Johnson, Patricia Lent, JoAnna Mendl-Shaw, Julie Nathanielsz, Jim Self
Community Partners: Cayuga Dressage and Training Association; CherryArts Theater; Cinemapolis/Ithaca; Community Arts Partnership of Tompkins County; Ithaca Porch Fest; Medicine Tree Farm; Spring Writes Literary Fest; Triphammer Arts
Audience: 1,944
County: Tompkins

Figures in the Field III included four project periods* and multiple performance locations in Tompkins County. Community populations included music and literary festival attendees, equestrian and dressage communities, dance artists, and general public. Approximately 1,944 people of all ages attended one or more of the events.

*(1)Artist Workshop/informal showing: As an introduction to inter-species dance work, JoAnna Mendl-Shaw (NYC) presented a workshop and showing related to human/ equine interactions. (June 2018)

*(2) Outdoor Performance: Chase Angier (Alfred University) installed a site-specific movement work for three performers and three-hundred ceramic flowers during the IthacaPorch Festival (September 2018). This highly visible event had the most interactions with the public based on its location in a grassy park amid several thousand attendees.

*(3)Spring Writes Literary Festival / “Word World Whirl”: Using projections, live performance, and spoken word, Rik Daniels, Jeanne Goddard, and Jim Self presented works based on literary themes. Sponsored by Community Arts Partnership of Tompkins County (May 4, 2019 at Cinemapolis Film Theater — new partner)

*(4)Residency of The Equus Projects Company (NYC) included workshops, trainings and interactive performance events featuring human and equine dancing (May 18 -23, 2019). Medicine Tree Farm in Newfield, NY was the primary host venue, providing housing, stable and arena for dancers’ use. The CRS Barn Dance Studio and the OTTB equestrian arena were workshop venues. OTTB/ Cayuga Dressage and Training Association are new partners in the “Figures in the Field” Series.
On May 19 Equus dancers created a film/dance outdoor event viewed by passing cars in West Danby, NY.

A new partner, The CherryArts Space hosted a final residency performance on May 23. Collaborating artists included: The Equus Projects Company, Julie Nathanielsz, Cynthia Stevens, Rik Daniels, Jim Self and a special appearance by local resident and Merce Cunningham Trustee, Patricia Lent. In a wonderful aesthetic overlap, Equus dancers performed sections of Cunningham’s “Field Dances.” Thematically, the performance focused on collaboration, chance, indeterminacy, and improvisational forms. Audience included dancers, artists and community organizers.

From JoAnna Mendl Shaw:
“Huge thanks to all of you for making this residency such an amazing week!
—-this was truly an opportunity to conduct research as dance makers, as equine skills learners, teachers and performers. The luxury of time, beautiful places to work and delicious food all fully contributed to the joy and productivity. Thank you for your generous support, interest in our work and very informative feedback.” –JMS and Equus Dancers -May 25, 2019