Friday, November 26, 2010

COCO Dance Festival 2010

Alice Yard and Bohemia, 26 to 28 November, 2010

The Contemporary Choreographers’ Collective, COCO, is a group of independent choreographers — Dave Williams, Nicole Wesley, Nancy Herrera, and Sonja Dumas — offering performance support for choreographers working in unconventional ways in Trinidad and Tobago. COCO will host its second annual dance festival, from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 November, 2010, in a series of unusual spaces.

The 2010 COCO Season, called the Moving Movement Museum, is a series of dances presented in two Woodbrook back yards which already have a tradition of performance: Alice Yard on Roberts Street and, two blocks away, Bohemia at 33 Murray Street. The first half will be at Alice Yard, and the second half at Bohemia. Patrons will be treated to a gallery of live performances created by an A-list line-up of both established and emerging choreographers: Dave Williams, Nicole Wesley, Rachel Lee, Gregor Breedy, Akuzuru, Anika Marcelle, and Sonja Dumas, as well as choreography students from dance programmes at the University of Trinidad and Tobago and the University of the West Indies. “Even the intermission is exciting,” says COCO co-director Sonja Dumas. “Movement will lead you from one space to the other.”


Friday 26 and Saturday 27 November: 8.00 pm
Sunday 28 November: 7.00 pm

Tickets are available from the choreographers and the organisers. Call 622-4426 to make reservations.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Alice Yard in The Global Africa Project: Peera, by Marlon Darbeau

See more images of the Peera prototype at Marlon Darbeau’s blog

Designer Marlon Darbeau’s Peera, a “design investigation” of a traditional furniture form, is featured in The Global Africa Project at the Museum of Arts and Design.

Darbeau writes:

“This project further investigates the idea of convergence, the utilisation of different modes of making.

“It is a culmination of many moments where a designer engages with an architect to design and build ... not a building but the architecture of a small object. Collaborating with Sean Leonard over the last year has brought up questions of multiplicity ... the nature of Alice Yard forces one to consider improvisation and demands a thing to have many purposes (a series of simple metal chairs is used for seating today, tomorrow they are shelves for displaying items).

“Ideas about rethinking and remaking the familiar challenge the way we see ourselves and the things we have grown up with. Christopher Cozier has appropriated the peera bench in a series he titles Little Gestures. while he sees it for its symbolic value, this object for me is a design investigation.”

From Marlon Darbeau’s sketchbook

Alice Yard in The Global Africa Project: Made in China, by Christopher Cozier

Artist Christopher Cozier’s Made in China, a three-dimensional version of an image that recurs in his recent works on paper, is featured in The Global Africa Project at the Museum of Arts and Design.

Cozier writes:

“‘Made in China’ stamps have been so much a part of our lives growing up in Caribbean. In the past it was pencils and plastic pencil-sharpeners, yellow twelve-inch rulers, etc. Modest items with all the associations of developing countries and low level consumption. Today, in the same locations, for people with bigger budgets, it is monolithic structures and narratives of progress.

“I bought this little stamp in a mall in Port of Spain. I began to see these little stamps more and more over the years. Apparently they are quite commonly used for labelling objects on arrival in small shops. Why are they being labelled like this here in Trinidad? What is the value of labelling my work this way in narratives of development and progress? So far I have begun to label drawings of pedestals for politicians to stand upon. Within the narrative of ‘development’ this object can allow them to feel taller and more important, or they could use it to hang themselves.”

Read more at Christopher Cozier’s blog

Monday, November 15, 2010

Alice Yard in The Global Africa Project: A Work in Progress

Alice Yard: A Work in Progress is a short video produced by Artzpub Films for our participation in The Global Africa Project, documenting the physical and critical spaces of the Yard and its creative network.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

A conversation with Marlon Griffith

Thursday 11 November, 2010, at 7.30 pm

From the Powder Box Schoolgirl series (2009), by Marlon Griffith

Marlon Griffith, a member of Alice Yard’s network of collaborators, is the recipient of a 2010 Guggenheim Fellowship and a 2010 Commonwealth Connections International Arts Residency. He is currently preparing to travel to Nassau, where he will work for several months supported by the Commonwealth residency. On Thursday 11 November, Griffith will give an informal talk at Alice Yard about his recent projects and work in progress.

All are invited.

Artist’s statement:

“Marlon Griffith is an artist whose practice is based upon a reciprocal dialogue between mas (the artistic component of Trinidad Carnival) and art as a means of investigating the phenomenological aspect of the embodied experience: it is situated at the intersection of the visual and public performance.

“Through this he has created installations and performance-based works which operate outside the context of mas and which look at fundamental questions in perception and how these actions respond to contemporary culture. In his refashioning of Carnival forms, the work challenges both commercialisation of Trinidad’s rich traditions of performance and their various appropriations by both Afro- and Indo-Trinidadians.

“Through this work he is able to use symbols that define Caribbean society and social groups, which are stripped down to their basic form and abstracted to create new images and narratives that are both public and participatory, responding critically and poetically to the socio-cultural environment which powerfully evokes the uneasy tension-filled interdependency between competing social groups that shapes contemporary Caribbean societies.”