Nora Chipaumire, In Conversation
Preceding the Bates Dance Festival presentation of portrait of myself as my father, SPACE is pleased to welcome virtuosic Zimbabwean dance maker nora chipaumire in conversation with Bates College professor Myron Beasley (Associate Professor of Cultural Studies, African American Studies, and Gender and Sexuality Studies). The 2018 Guggenheim Fellow will contextualize her rigorous dance-ritual, in which she trades jabs with spectres of her estranged father as he fights against prejudice, social pressures, and the weight of history.
portrait of myself as my father takes place in a simulated boxing ring in which chipaumire and Senegalese dancer Pape Ibrahima Ndiaye, also known as Kaolack, are tied together in an exhausting and symbolic dance-ritual. They are both linked and opposed, and the elastic bands are a literal and figurative connection that question family ties. Joining them in this singular performance event is Jamaican-born, Brooklyn-based dancer Shamar Watt, who plays the coach/corner man/cheerleader/shadow. Tickets and more info on the Bates Dance Festival site
nora chipaumire has been challenging and embracing stereotypes of Africa and the black performing body, art and aesthetic. She is a graduate of the University of Zimbabwe’s School of Law and holds a master’s degree in dance and a master’s of fine arts in choreography and performance from Mills College. She has studied dance in Africa, Cuba, Jamaica and the U.S. and has performed worldwide.
Born in Mutare, Zimbabwe and based in NYC, chipaumire most recently received the 2016 Trisha Mckenzie Memorial Award for her impact on the dance community in Zimbabwe. She was also awarded a 2016 Foundation for Contemporary Arts grant and a 2015 Doris Duke Artist award. She was a Hodder Fellow at Princeton University in 2014-2015, 2012 Alpert Award in the Arts recipient and 2011 United States Artist Ford Fellow. chipaumire is a three-time New York Dance and Performance (aka “Bessie”) Awardee: in 2008 for her dance-theater work, Chimurenga, in 2007 for her body of work with Urban Bush Women, and in 2014 for the revival of her solo Dark Swan.