The SLC Performance Lab is produced by ContemporaryPerformance.com and the Sarah Lawrence College MFA Theatre Program. Each month we interview visiting artists to the MFA Theatre Program’s Grad Lab, one of the core classes of the program where grads work with guest artists and develop group generated performance pieces monthly.
Emily Johnson is interviewed by Yuexing (Star) Sun (SLC21) and Emily Aviles (SLC21).
Emily Johnson is an artist who makes body-based work. She is a land and water protector and an activist for justice, sovereignty and well-being. A Bessie Award-winning choreographer, Guggenheim Fellow and recipient of the Doris Duke Artist Award, she is based in New York City. Originally from Alaska, Emily is of the Yup’ik Nation, and since 1998 has created work that considers the experience of sensing and seeing performance. Her dances function as portals and installations, engaging audiences within and through space, time, and environment—interacting with a place’s architecture, peoples, history and role in community. Emily is trying to make a world where performance is part of life; where performance is an integral connection to each other, our environment, our stories, our past, present and future.
* Note: There is an accidental citation in this podcast stating that Leanne Simpson wrote Emergent Strategy, which is incorrect. adrienne maree brown is the author of Emergent Strategy, though Leanne Simpson’s book As We Have Always Done, is highly recommended as well
Photo by Tracy Rector and Melissa Ponder