Tag Archives: performance

Triptych Collective presents “Traces” at the Neighborhood Theatre

The Triptych Collective is a group of performance artists interested in bringing a unique blend of live music, dance performance and visual art to non-traditional spaces in order to make thought-provoking and socially-engaged performance art more widely accessible.

“Traces” is a compilation of Triptych Collective works-in-progress for the Fall 2014 season. The show features work by Collective artists Reba Bowens, Sarah Ingel, Caitlyn Swett, and Eric Mullis and also features Hectorina’s performance musical “Collywobble.”  “Traces” was performed Thursday, November 20, 2014, at Neighborhood Theatre in Charlotte, NC.  Each of the artists writes about her or his piece below.



Twitter: @triptychcollect

“Traces,” from the November 20, 2014 show:


The Artists: 

Sarah Ingel

Must make much much much more more more effort

Observing popular culture trends surrounding reality television and celebrity culture, society has developed an overwhelming need to build people up only to see them fall. With accessibility to the details of peoples lives at an all time high, our need to know more has become a staple of our society. Gossip, positive or negative, feeds our desire to become part of the world of the notable and notorious. But when our feelings of curiosity outweigh our feelings of empathy, an act of dehumanization occurs. We all exist with an internal world and an external world, but what happens when these worlds overlap? Must make much much much more more more explores the effects of our consumer culture, the need to know, provide, and iconize information about our internal worlds, and the consequences these cravings have on the individuals of our affections. When does private become public? When does this conflict of worlds turn a person into a battleground of confusion, depression, ego, and alter ego? How does our desire encounter our embarrassment of our desires and result in a revelation of who we truly are? These queries, and much much much more more more, have fueled the movement scores and improvisational structures that make up a piece dedicated to depicting our struggle with the division and intersection between our own public and private selves. “Do you wanna see me be her?” –Marilyn Monroe



Caitlyn Swett


I have been very lucky to experience a variety of different creative processes, ways of creating dance, and working with many different themes and conceptual content. Even in my own work, I have felt that each creative process has been significantly different from the last. Perhaps it is the collaborative nature of Triptych Collective’s work that produces a diverse repertory, thus presenting many different experiences through dance. This season, instead of being able to say “this piece is about (insert concept here),” the ideas I have been working with, both conceptually and aesthetically, have developed and unfolded into something different and unexpected. Though the movement was generated around ideas of silence and conversation, through this process I have given myself the permission to create a work in which the movement is enjoyable to perform, view, and experience. My collaborators and I have had many conversations about the way that we connect to the piece and with each other when performing. I am interested what connections an audience makes, how this may differ from the connections we are making, and how an audience digests and responds to a work without the lens of a concrete idea or story that a choreographer may place upon them. I am interested in how I can create a thoughtful piece that evokes conversation and asks questions without having a piece be “about” a single thing. Further, I am interested in the responses, conversations, and possibilities that can come from a “lens-less” way of viewing dance.

Triptych photo 1

Reba Bowens

Finding My Voice

After writing a short blog about my development in capoeira, a Brazilian martial art created by slaves combining music, dance, acrobatics and other aspects of Brazilian culture, I began to think about my relationship or my connection to creating movement. I was questioning what movement means to me and understanding how my movement vocabulary has changed since being more immersed in capoeira. Is my desire to create movement something of a spiritual or therapeutic release for me? This question has and I think will continue to plague me not only as a dancer but as a capoeirista, capoeira practitioner. The first draft of this piece will be shown on November 20th at the Neighborhood Theatre along with other work presented by members of the Triptych Collective, XOXO Ensemble, Sinergismo, and Hectorina’s “Collywobble.” This piece is a personal reflection that will be continued to possibly include at least one or two dancers, and a live or recorded reading of excerpts from journals of my thoughts and feeling in understanding my movement.

Eric Mullis

Later Rain

Triptych photo 2

This work is my second collaboration with XOXO Theater director Matt Cosper.  Matt and I collaborated on Animus in the spring of 2014 and decided to start a new project in the summer. We reflected on our own experiences with ecstatic religion and began to research the history of the Pentecostal Holiness movement in America.  We are interested by the fact that ekstasis can be found in religions around the world and in popular culture as well (festivals, holidays, etc.) and want to explore how losing control of the body and self is understood in different social contexts.  For example, it is interesting that the Holiness movement sees being filled with the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues as signs of divine presence whereas other mainstream Christian denominations are wary about those beliefs and experiences.  This is just one example of howekstasis is interpreted in different ways by different people in different cultural traditions.  We are hoping that Later Rain will encourage audiences to consider the relationship between ekstasis and broader social values.

triptych photo 3

How is choir

by James Sanders

For the past several years, I’ve been increasingly drawn to “situated poetry”– poems designed to be performed or composed for specific sites or occasions (though by no means restricted to those sites or occasions). Jackson Mac Low’s Pronouns and performance scores, David Antin’s and Steve Benson’s improvisatory pieces, Gertrude Stein’s operas and plays, and the art of Alexander Calder and Robert Smithson are just some examples of work that has pushed me in this direction.  “How is choir” is a poem written for a large multi-media piece called “Island Boy Live” designed and produced by filmmaker Anna Winter and composer-performer Luke Leavitt – both based in Denver. Hovering between music video, sound art installation, and experimental film, “Island Boy Live” pursues connections between Denver’s local dance subcultures and the landscapes – natural, social, and economic – that incubate them. “Island Boy Live” began as a song by Leavitt, which I then used to create the poem here. Performances of the poem were recorded and then mixed into the song, and accompanying video was created.  A dual channel video for “Island Boy Live” can be found here: http://www.swigview.com/Y14mswC.

That video served as a basis for a live performance at Monkey Town in Denver (http://www.monkeytown4.com/) earlier this year. The performance consisted of Leavitt playing the “Island Boy” song live with his keytar, with “How is choir” taped on the ground around him and used for some vocal improvisations, all backgrounded by the video. Leavitt also had four bottles of red-dyed soy sauce, wielding them as a weapon of sorts– a playful splash on the ‘high-dining’ atmosphere of the Monkey Town events (which are curated by professional chefs). A few bottles– and a diner’s carafe– were accidentally smashed in performance. Some diners complained that the smell of the sauce ruined the food, others claimed it enticed their appetites!  Some scattered shots of the performance can be found here: https://vine.co/v/MJ90mqwWzOp and  http://instagram.com/p/m1QeJjw2Kn/.

James Sanders-How is choir_Page_1


James Sanders-How is choir_Page_2


James Sanders-How is choir_Page_3


James Sanders-How is choir_Page_4


James Sanders-How is choir_Page_5



James SandersJames Sanders is a member of the Atlanta Poets Group, a writing and performing collective. His most recent book is Goodbye Public and Private (BlazeVox). His book, Self-Portrait in Plants, is forthcoming in 2015 from Coconut Books. The University of New Orleans Press also recently published the group’s An Atlanta Poets Group Anthology: The Lattice Inside.




Twitter: @ATLPoetsGroup.


Postcolonial Thoughts: Notes on Judith Butler’s Performativity: Spectacle & Realism

By Christopher Hutchinson


“In the late 80s, a new theorist emerged on the scene. She was called Judith Butler, and she was to revolutionise gender theory so fundamentally, that to write a paper on gender in the 21st century that does not at least reference Butler, is to almost place yourself outside of theoretical intelligibility.”-Caroline Criado-Perez

Sex & Agency

Both Butler and Foucault, leading theorists in queer theory, outline the automatic problems with identifying sex as a morally structured construct. Sex merely wants to “get off”. Sex has no interest in the organization of like sexual beings to engage in politics. Both theorists see the engaging of politics and origination as an agency that is separate from sex. Foucault suggests that the politicizing of homosexuality, for those agencies that are concerned with morality, should be more accurately discussed under birth control and reproduction. Butler goes further to analyze the gender role performed by all. She suggests that once one assumes an identity, then one has to perform the corresponding acts to fulfill that identity. That performance becomes just as binary as the patriarchal structure present. Both theorists see the binary gender roles as problematic. Butler attempts to identify and dismiss the performance in her discussion of performativity.

Judith Butler believed we were all performing gender-Caroline Criado-Perezhttp://www.newstatesman.com/voices/2014/05/caroline-criado-perez-judith-butler-whats-phallus-got-do-it




Butler’s performativity is a complicated proposal that ends up being a place of ambiguity. The goal is to operate completely outside of the binary, to become oneself. No labels, no boxes, no campaign, no identity, no agency that can be used as propaganda. Performance functions within those paradigms. Butler’s argument is applicable to all gender roles and stereotypes generated in this culture, and subcultures. Should one assume and wave the flag of the stereotype/gender/ethnicity for an agency? Proving to be authentically a gender/stereotype/ethnicity is merely advocating the spectacle as it relates to patriarchal normalcy. Identity by itself is a lazy excuse to create art.



 Rashaad Newsome

Shade Compositions 2012 SFMOMA (27min. version)

Queer Realism

 “Realism is an approach to art in which subjects are depicted in as straightforward a manner as possible, without idealizing them and without following rules of formal artistic theory. The earliest Realist work began to appear in the 18th century, in a reaction to the excesses of Romanticism and Neoclassicism. This is evident in John Singleton Copley’s paintings, and some of the works of Goya. But the great Realist era was the middle of the 19th century, as artists became disillusioned with the artifice of the Salons and the influence of the Academies. Realism came closest to being an organized movement in France, inspiring artists such as Camille Corot, Jean-Francois Millet and the Barbizon School of landscape painters. Besides Copley, American Realists included the painters Thomas Eakins, and Henry Ossawa Tanner, both of whom studied in France. http://www.artcyclopedia.com/history/realism.html



The thoughts developed in realism seem most to encompass both Butler’s and Foucault’s queer theory, which would more accurately be described as queer realism. Butler’s ambiguity attempts to find this realism. Tanner’s Banjo Lesson is not about pity, sympathy, or idealism. It is simply a grandfather teaching his grandson the banjo. Contemporary Black art is today filled with sympathy, pity, and idealism the complete opposite of the Tanner’s realism, now belittled in a romanticized spectacle. So too have many under the banner of queer theory, moved so far away from queer realism to pure spectacle, engaging in the very same binary gender archetypes perfected in patriarchal society. Many have manipulated and abused Butler’s theory to advance their own agency of indulgence, politics, and morality.


Christopher HutchinsonChristopher Hutchinson is an Assistant Professor of Art at Atlanta Metropolitan State College, Archetype Art Gallery Owner in Atlanta, Ga, and Smoke School of Art Founder. He received his Master of Fine Arts Degree in Painting from Savannah College of art & Design, Atlanta and his Bachelor of Arts Degree from the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Alabama. He lived in Alabama for 10 years before moving to Atlanta in 2008.

Learn more about Christopher and his work at Black Flight 144.

Works by Jason Sweet

"From Home"     32" x 32" x 5"     Welded steel, enamel paint, patina

“From Home”
32″ x 32″ x 5″
Welded steel, enamel paint, patina

"Comp 3 & 4"      32" x 32" x 2"      Welded Steel, enamel paint, patina

“Comp 3 & 4”
32″ x 32″ x 2″
Welded Steel, enamel paint, patina

"Organic Produce"      18" x 24"      Pencil drawing and Georgia clay

“Organic Produce”
18″ x 24″
Pencil drawing and Georgia clay

"Cast Under"       60" x 38" x 12"       Welded Steel, enamel paint, patina

“Cast Under”
60″ x 38″ x 12″
Welded Steel, enamel paint, patina

"John Woolman's Gift"       Mixed media installation

“John Woolman’s Gift”
Mixed media installation

"No Puede Hacer Anoche"        Performance art piece

“No Puede Hacer Anoche”
Performance art piece

"Architectural and Environmental Symposium"      Public Art Commission monumental scale       Commercial Bronze

“Architectural and Environmental Symposium”
Public Art Commission monumental scale
Commercial Bronze


“Sigoa!” at 2009 annual international performance art series at Vertigo.


 Aspects of art I create is a genuine reflection of my interest in conceptual and/or formal notions in art making. By using conceptual matter and formal matter as a vehicle, my body of work attempts to balance contrasting elements be it through materials, design and/or subject matter.


Jason Sweet Jason Sweet is a sculptor, painter, drawer, performance and installation artist.  He has exhibited his work internationally and has been awarded a number of public art commissions.  Sweet is Assistant Professor of Art and serves as Department Chair of Fine Arts at Atlanta Metropolitan State College.  He received his Master of Fine Art Degree in Sculpture from the University of Illinois Urbana/Champaign where he studied under renowned glass artist William Carlson and artist/critic Buzz Spector.  For his Bachelor of Arts he attended the University of Northern Iowa studying under the direction of sculptor Tom Stancliffe.  In 2001 he moved to Atlanta of which he currently resides.

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