Home Life and Arts Dance and art collide at Texas State exhibit

Dance and art collide at Texas State exhibit

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Michelle Nance performs at the opening of the exhibit on Oct. 24.
Michelle Nance performs at the opening of the exhibit on Oct. 24.
Photo By Shaun Haugen

Texas State is presenting a gallery with site-specific installation and video as part of the continuing exhibitions of art for fall 2018.

The Texas State Galleries, located in the Joann Cole Mitte building, is the exhibit Espacios Latentes/Latent Spaces. It is open and free to the public Oct. 24 to Nov. 16. The galleries are open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-9 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday 12-6 p.m. The exhibit is special to Texas State as all the performers and artists involved are faculty or students.

Margo Handwerker, director of Texas State Galleries, curated the exhibition. She initially invited Ana Baer Carrillo, dance professor, to exhibit her own art.

“It was unusual that we have an exhibition of works by someone who teaches at Texas State,” Handwerker said. “We mostly have national and international artists exhibit work.”

The artworks’ focus is site-specific screendance works.

Carrillo is primarily a dance choreographer with a focus in dance performances on stage. Carrillo said it was challenging bringing that type of dance into a gallery setting.

“My contribution at the curatorial level was trying to make sure the integrity of the gallery space was preserved as a space for art,” Handwerker said.

Within the gallery are projections of dancers performing at specific locations around the world.

Carrillo filmed and choreographed each location and dance that took place in the projections. Carrillo then edited the footage to present it within the gallery space.

The sites where filming and dance occurred were in North Yorkshire Moors, U.K., Iceland and the Monarch Butterfly Sanctuary in Morelia, Michoacán, Mexico.

The fourth location was a demolished house and a site under construction in San Marcos.

Brandon Gonzalez, dance and art lecturer, is one of the performers featured. He danced with Pat Stone, Texas State faculty in dance, and Nan Simms, Texas State student in dance, at the site of the demolished home.

Gonzalez said the dancing created a narrative story where psychology, connection and loss were themes emphasized in the choreography and portrayed in the dance.

“Carrillo gave (choreographed) instructions about who we are (as performers) and as characters,” Gonzalez said.

Gonzalez said the project was extremely collaborative and Carrillo worked closely with every member of the project. There was a lot of freedom in how each person contributed to the final outcome. The footage from all four locations was combined to create the finished project.

Onix Rodriguez, studio art senior, attended the opening, which included a performance.

“The exhibit was very immersive, technological and exciting,” Rodriguez said. “I responded to the improvised choreography and the dancers responded to different (sites).”

Students and faculty have the opportunity to experience the art and are welcomed to attend different exhibitions throughout the academic year.

Handwerker said the gallery is a place to learn and discuss subjects that are not pertinent to just the arts. She encourages students and faculty to seek out the galleries as a way to explore new subjects and ideas.

The exhibition is scheduled to travel to a venue in Mexico City, Sao Paulo and the U.K.

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