Meet the Artists – Julie D. Mills

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1) if you could hang out with the ghost of any artist passed, who would it be? what would you do?
I think I’d love to hang out with cellist/performance artist Charlotte Moorman. Her work was so wacky – I love it. Maybe we would attend one of the annual events she organized for the Avant Garde Festival of New York – or maybe I’d invite her to join me on a pilgrimage to Pistachio Land, New Mexico.

2) is the project you’re creating for Shooting Gallery beginning with any specific questions? 
I really interested in the modern mis-portrayal/dramatization of the history of ‘witches’. For this work i’ve drawn a fair bit of my imagery from the history of the ‘sabbat’, (a fictional congregation involving devil worship used to justify the condemnation of innocent women for centuries.) I hope to weave this loosely through the work while maintaining a distance that allows for the portrayal of new ritual through light and movement.
Furthermore, the sculptures i’ve made for the work play with light being in close proximity to the face of each performer, which I use with the intention of distorting one’s features – creating an appearance that resists gendered binaries.

3) what’s your favourite thing to make for dinner?
One of my go-to’s right now is simple veggie, miso and tofu Udon.  I also really love to make a hearty winter casserole with mashed potatoes, sausage, onion and crispy kale on top. If i’m cooking for a group of people though, I love to make a risotto – that way we an all share the painstaking stirring process.

4) embarrassing story or confession? 
When I was about 12 I didn’t make the volley ball team at school so my friends suggested I be their mascot (which was a husky) so that I could still take part. For our big school pep rally I decided to make a paper maché dog head for myself to wear. The only catch was that I started to make it the day of, and then put it into the cafeteria freezer to speed up the solidifying process, took it out, painted it, and then put it back in. Needless to say, when I wore it during the pep rally it melted on my head and even the audience of children were very confused by my role in the spectacle. I refer to this event as the mascot massacre. I think I’ve been trying to redeem myself as a performer ever since that happened.

-Maxine Chadburn

Meet the Artists – Julie D. Mills

Meet the Artists – Olivia C. Davies

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1) What’s one of the most memorable moments you’ve experienced while performing or creating? 

Performing a water honoring this past autumn on the edge of the Kichisippi River on Algonquin Territory in Ottawa, ON, I was intensely aware of the women who were witnessing me — women who had walked for miles and miles to bring about awareness of the water crisis that affects so many FN communities and were now sitting down around a fire, eating stew, and witnessing me move. The moment was punctuated with a single drop of rain that fell just as I was moving towards a final shape at the water’s edge. It was an intense moment I will never forget.

2) Have you ever faced an intense or surprising crossroads in your career/art? How and what did you decide? 

It was heart-breaking to learn that I was going to be too tall to be a ballerina..this was back when I was twelve, auditioning for the RWB Professional Program and full of a devotion for the form that I would later reject and yet always fall back on as the foundation of my training as a dance artist. Turns out they were correct in their assumptions. That year I tried Pointe work I quickly realized I preferred to watch others do it than suffer the mangled toes and other warped physiology that comes from the technique.

3) Has art ever changed your mind about something?
Art for art’s sake. This idiom changed my mind about art having to be about something. It keeps me from hanging out to far in my biases and pushes me to make art that opens new ways of seeing the world.

4) If you could hang out with the ghost of any artist passed, who would it be? what would you do? what would you ask?

I would bring Merce into my studio and ask him to show me everything he knows.

5) Is the project you’re creating for Shooting Gallery beginning with any specific questions? 

 How can we create a wishing well together? What are the essential ingredients? Who gets to choose which wishes are fulfilled? Do you believe?

6) Can you tell us about a work of art which you remember because of your emotional reaction to it? (Whether you liked it or not)

LaLaLa Human Steps — a solo where the dancer leaped around the stage and every leap was caught in the flash of a strobe. I was floored. I’m pretty sure that was the work that drew me into Contemporary choreography.

7) What’s your favorite thing to make for dinner?

Homemade chicken soup, minus the noodles

8) Do you have any hobbies?

Cuddling with my two cats, reading old copies of the New Yorker, gardening when the sun is out and the soil is calling

 

-Maxine Chadburn

 

Meet the Artists – Olivia C. Davies

Meet the Artists – Sophia Wolfe

Q+A w/ Sophia Wolfe

1) Has art ever changed your mind about something?
Absolutely, everyday, all the time!

2) If you could hang out with the ghost of any artist passed, who would it be? what would you do?
Micheal Jackson, he’d teach me how to sing and dance.

3) Is the project you’re creating for Shooting Gallery beginning with any specific questions?
I am curious about different ways that I can immediately collect and view audiences visual perspectives through their smart phones, and how that can be re-shaped, recycled and transformed into something else.

4) Can you tell us about a work of art which you remember because of your emotional reaction to it? (Whether you liked it or not)
I recently watched She, Mami Wata & The Pussy Witchhunt, by Frank Theatre. It was mind-blowing transported me into new realms and dimensions. D’Bi Young Anitafrika was something out of this world, and told stories through her incredible spirt and presence. She transformed in ways I had never seen a performer transform before and it was so inspiring to witness. I won’t ever forget it.

5) What’s your favourite thing to make for dinner?
Anything that involves noodles!

6) Do you have any hobbies?
Forever making plans for a vacation…

7) Embarrassing story or confession?
Watching Terrace House (a Japanese reality TV show, kind of like Big Brother) in my free time… Im trying to learn Japanese!

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Photo credit: Sammy Chien @soar55

-Maxine Chadburn
Meet the Artists – Sophia Wolfe

Meet the Artists – Priscilla Costa

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This week we’re introducing you all to Priscilla Costa. She is a warm, high energy clown artist and an excellent host! When I arrived at her East Vancouver home, she welcomed me with lemon water and rose tea. A plate filled with cheese, crackers and fruit followed not long after. We sat on the floor of her living room, sipped tea and recorded our chat which was prompted by a few thoughts of her own and questions of mine.

Take a listen and get a glimpse of our first artist of the 9th Shooting Gallery Performance Series!

Here, Priscilla touches briefly on what drives her to perform!

Priscilla shares her experience navigating the draw of darkness, and confessions of an existential clown breakdown here and there. We discuss the balance of when to dig and when to wait.

*** a few curse words in there, consider yourself warned.

-Maxine Chadburn

Meet the Artists – Priscilla Costa

Meet the Curator

Maxine Chadburn is a performance artist based on the unseeded territory’s of the Coast Salish peoples, the Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations. She has performed with various companies and independent choreographers, touring across Canada and internationally. Maxine has focused her studies on Contemporary dance, contact improvisation, Meisner’s acting technique and Fitzmaurice Voicework. For her work in feature film, she’s received nominations for Best Lead Performance by a Female in a Motion Picture and Best Emerging Performer presented by the Leos and UBCP/ACTRA Awards.

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Meet the Curator