MIFFONEDGE Vol. 7
Returning to a fascinating, turn-of-the-century building, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, MIFFONEDGE Vol.7 invites us to expand our perceptions regarding disciplinary boundaries as we engage with six artists and multiple interactive performances. How does sensory memory influence our futures? What is the relationship between natural history, myth, and individual story?
We will take a ceremonial journey that blends nature, music, dance, storytelling and performance art. We will explore longing, loss, and vulnerability, we will experience a radical act of rebellion where the artist maintains agency while offering a platform to explore touch, and we will contrast digital and analog media with a modern, abstract visual take on the first Cape Verdean novel. With an incredibly experimental group of artists sharing deeply personal work, the 2019 program promises to be unforgettable.
July 13-21, 2019
Old Waterville Post Office
1 Post Office Square
Waterville, Maine 04901
July 13: 12-9 with Opening Party at 8:30 p.m.
July 14: 12-7
July 15: 2-7 with Narcissa Gold’s Consent, Intent, & Boundaries pt. 1 at 8:30 p.m.
July 16: 2-7
July 17: 2-7 with Narcissa Gold’s Consent, Intent, & Boundaries pt. 2 at 8:30 p.m.
July 18: 2-7 with Narcissa Gold’s Consent, Intent, & Boundaries pt. 3 at 8:30 p.m.
July 19: 2-7
July 20: 12-7 with Audrey Harrer’s Lavender at 8:00 p.m.
July 21: 12-close
Audrey Harrer’s “Lavender” is a multi-sensory song cycle that celebrates how memory shapes and guides us. Audience members will receive a “Sensory Program” with six sealed envelopes that correspond with each piece. Surrounded by projections created by cinematographer Michael Pessah, Harrer performs her works on harp/vocals/electronics with cellist Jesse Christeson, complimented by dancers Lonnie Stanton and Tony Guglietti (choreography by Kristin Wagner and Tony Guglietti). From customized refreshments to essential oils to experiments with light, “Lavender” is a meditative journey that encourages audiences to place their own narrative in this immersive experience.in environments as varied as rock clubs, galleries, house shows, hospitals, studios, and recital halls.
A five-screen synced simultaneous projected video installation made from a ceremonial journey across a pastoral field to a spectacular lake. A group dressed in white led by a woman with a red umbrella walk slowly across the rolling fields and encounter nature, music, dance, storytelling, and performance art. Many of the scenes are ambient, trees, or water, until you see the actors move dreamily through. Run time 1:00:00
Susan Bickford: Concept / Director / Editor
Robin Lane: Post Production Sound
Annabel O’Neil: Moving Camera
Stan Levitsky: Stationary Camera
Anna Abaldo: Choreography / Movement
Susan Osberg: Choreography /Movement
Actors: Fletcher Boote, Heather Lyon, Anna Witholt Abaldo, Andrea Goodman, Anna Dembska, Rachel Alexandrou, Luke Myers, Brianna Daley, Mary Jean Viano Crowe, Julie Jaeger, Kyle Foster, Matea Mills Andruck, Susan Smith, Zöe Mason, Kristin Dillon, Dakota Douglas, Susan Bickford
My Body is Your Body is Everybody is Nobody: Consent, Intent, & Boundaries
“Consent, Intent, & Boundaries” is a series of live interactive performances exploring specific methods of touch. Each performance will focus on two specific types of interaction: observing, caressing, squeezing, slapping, kissing, and washing. The rationale for each performance builds on the idea that people will attend multiple performances and become more comfortable with interacting with the performer. Touch work tests the boundaries of consent and comfort. Performances are fraught with power dynamics. Our society markets a woman’s body as a commodity to be protected, policed, covered, and used. The “My Body is Your Body is Everybody is Nobody” thesis is a radical act of rebellion where the artist maintains agency while offering a platform to explore touch.
Walking Backwards (Birger's Walk)
Julie Poitras Santos
Set in a 17th Century ropewalk in Karlskrona, Sweden, “Walking Backwards (Birger’s Walk)” takes the form of a video that braids together imagery from performers in the ropewalk and the surrounding landscape of southern Sweden. The text weaves together historical descriptions collected from rope makers, ropemaking manuals, and fragments from Xavier de Maistre’s 1794 Voyage Around my Room amplified and enlarged by a piece of original fiction woven within the fragments to create an account of a ropewalker whose lover is lost at sea.
Vocals and violin: Astrid Selling
Audio recording: Dan Setthamer
Slängpolska dancers: Peter Svensson, Maria Persson
Created in collaboration with:
Konst i Blekinge, AiR Blekinge, Sweden
Kulturcentrum Ronneby Konsthall, Ronneby, Sweden
Repslagarbanan, Karlskrona, Sweden
Inter Arts Center, Malmö, Sweden
LONGING FOR OTHER WORLDS
A two-channel, site-specific video installation incorporating video projection, props from the videos, and rope. Imagery from the video reveals a woman standing at the edge of a liquid nether space using simple repeated actions taken from daily life to explore longing, loss, and vulnerability.
Portraits of Chiquinho
Inspired by the first Cape Verdean novel, this visual experience borrows its title from the African island on which it was filmed: the remote and deeply rural Ilha de São Nicolau, affectionately known as Chiquinho. The piece offers a modern, abstract visual take on the seminal contribution to Cape Verdean literature, written in 1936. It contrasts digital and analog media, optically alludes with an array of camera angles, and features aerial cinematography and Super 8 film. Emphasizing synchrony with music and punctuated by Portuguese narration, Portraits of Chiquinho invites the audience to explore the exotic, mountainous topography in both the visual and auditory realms. It brings to the screen a snapshot of Cabo Verde’s isolated communities, exposes stunning vistas viewed from a bird’s eye, and offers intimate images captured in the archipelago’s heartland. This experimental and dynamic work endeavors to be at once an authentic portrait of the people and geographic survey of the surreal landscape it spotlights. Narration by Helton Carlos Gonçalves Ribeiro and Marilanda Silva Patrícia Fonseca Contina.
MIFFONEDGE Vol.7 Artists:
Susan Bickford’s approach to art is a deep ecological one. A Certified Nature Therapy Guide Susan Bickford also holds an MFA from Maine College of Art and a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design. Winner of the 2017 Maine Arts Commission Individual Artist Fellowship in Media and Performance, Susan Bickford has been making interdisciplinary collaborative retreat/performance in nature since 2001. These 4-day artist retreats result in multi-screen video installations which are shown in traditional art spaces and film festivals. The interesting thing about seeing a performance from multiple points of view simultaneously is that is is “more than being there”. I can suddenly see from far away or close up, a fishes, an insects or an eagles point of view. The pace of the action is very slow so that the viewer can synch into noticing and linger across the beauty of the landscape. The (stillness) project is an annual event begun in 2015, migrating through sites along the waterways of Midcost Maine with the intention to deepen our connection to nature, each other and ourselves. She has been a lecturer at the University of Maine at Augusta since 2003.
I am a performance and new media artist with a fondness for six pack rings and human touch. I am obsessed with the flash in the pan, the inexhaustible pleasure, and the endless high of what we call pop culture. I’m interested in the mechanics of how ideas, images, people, etc become popular and how long that duration is. The things that survive, like artifacts will become our culture thus leading to the equation pop = immediacy / culture = longevity. My work investigates the power and influence of human touch through performance, video, social media, and instruction based art. By researching and adapting sensate focused exercises, I create space to examine the politics and nuances of touch.
Heather Lyon is an installation, video and performance artist based in Maine. Combining her interest in the meanings of materials (ranging from rebar to sequins to milk to ash) and the question of the human body, she investigates relationships and the ways in which we negotiate longing, loss, desire, and vulnerability. She holds a BFA and MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Her work has recently been exhibited and performed at the Center for Maine Contemporary Art, Rockland, TEDx Dirigo, Portland, The Danforth Gallery, University of Maine Augusta, The Picnic Pavilion, a parallel project to the 58th Venice Biennale, Venice, Italy, The State Silk Museum, Tbilisi, Georgia and at Artisterium 10, Tbilisi, Georgia, for which she received an Emergency Artist Grant from the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, New York.
Julie Poitras Santos
The relationship between site, story and mobility fuels my multi-disciplinary practice, comprised of video, audio walks, writing, and site-specific public projects. Investigating the relationship between natural histories, myth and individual story, and using walking as a form of listening to site, the works foreground material agency and storytelling in an age of climate change.
For over a decade, my work has focused on walking and methodologies of fieldwork as a means to investigate richly sited ways of knowing, create temporary communities and opportunities for exchange and learning, and to narrate new perspectives regarding place. My recent body of work has examined stories regarding our intersections with the natural world, provoking attention to our inseparability from the planet that creates and sustains us. For example, these works have regarded geological times scales, bryophyte ecology, pollinator extinction, and the global effects of lighting the night sky on flora and fauna. Through community walks I invite shared storytelling to provoke greater understanding of site-specific, sustaining contexts and relationships. The hybrid video/audio essays create mobile platforms for connecting site, story, and scientific research, linking intimate affective experience with our transforming planetary condition.
My work crosses disciplinary boundaries, in particular creating bridges between science, site, and visual art, making connections and establishing affective, active conversations between diversely intersecting communities. Linking sympathetic ideas and concerns across different disciplines allows me to expand the scope and vision of the project necessary to thinking with others across diverse scales of space and time in these times of great urgency.
Audrey Harrer is an experimental pop composer/vocalist/harpist. Her work is an unexpected blend of melodic wordplay, detailed arrangements, and processed harp. She collaborates with chamber groups, runs DIY shows, and experiments with music technologists. She cares about process, community, and the arts as a means to create connection.
Based in Los Angeles, Harrer grew up in rural Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. She moved to Boston to study music composition and voice, subsequently adopting the harp as a creative tool for self-accompaniment and sonic exploration. She has worked and/or performed with Gem Club, Hank Shocklee (Bomb Squad, Public Enemy), (Vapors of) Morphine, Roger Clark Miller (Mission of Burma, Trinary System), and many others. Audrey has studied with groups such as the Kalistos Chamber Orchestra and Meredith Monk’s Vocal Ensemble; written commissions for the Cambridge Philharmonic and Peabody Essex Museum; collaborated with chamber groups such as Verdant Vibes and Hub New Music; and she performs solo with her electroacoustic harp and loop pedal in environments as varied as rock clubs, galleries, house shows, hospitals, studios, and recital halls.
Audrey’s goal has always been to live an interesting, creative life surrounded by inspired people. She cares about process, sustainability, community-building, and working collaboratively across genres and art forms.
Caleb Baker is an emerging visual artist whose videography has focused on geographically isolated communities of the Atlantic islands. He has filmed on most of Macaronesia, documenting people living in harsh landscapes. His recent work has brought him to West Africa where he has made several journeys to document the natural beauty of the islands and the people who have adapted to their isolation. Baker’s productions heavily emphasize aerial imagery, and he is a licensed remote pilot for unmanned aircraft. His work deviates from the traditional documentary style in that it focuses primarily on exotic visuals and novel cinematographic techniques.
MIFFONEDGE Vol. 7 Sponsored by