Joya: AiR / Vivian Chinasa + Rosie Cooper / UK
“The fact of seeing is not a reference for believing; in nature there are many performances that surpass human knowledge. For example, I place myself in a landscape, interacting with the concept of scale, distance, and composition. I jump up and down, imitating a Kenyan man, who being engaged in his cultural dance seeks to reach beyond what is seen. Though I am seen by the land and by a camera and thus the person operating the camera, the performance that I am engaged in is not the only performance happening”.
“Every jump creates a shift in the environment that I am in; each creature reacts to the sound of my feet pounding the dusty, dirt tracks. The crickets jump to find a space of refugee; the flies fly to come back to where they were. The ground itself id hard and dusty, riddled with sharp broken stones, my feet starts to resemble a war zone.
The complexity of the landscape heightens in this very small moment of interaction. Suddenly what seemed like a performance for the camera, an action initiated by me the human becomes a negotiation between my body and the land that it belongs to.
My practice is my politics and my engagement with the system I chose to live in.
I am not historical or futuristic; I am not an image of any imagination nor am I a history book formed out of misogyny. My process is to perform my truth, to find my identity and define that identity through movement. When I move, I move with my history.
The land is my first point of call; it is a canvas of expression. I am here on a one week residency with Rosie cooper a multi-disciplinary artist; working on establishing a collaborative process that embeds identity, culture and performance in the land.
We have been creating a series of images and films’ looking at my body in relation to this landscape and my memories of growing up in Nigeria in a landscape so different from this yet through performance becomes a place of many similarities”.
“As a filmmaker and photographer with a background of studying fine art, I thrive on the challenge of conveying ideas through a unique perspective of articulate editing, colours and imagery manipulation. I pursue a range of collaborative projects both within the arts, music and business and thrive on those engagements of a brief and inspire to produce their idea or a feeling into a visual reality, a tangible form of art.
Within my practice I find inspiration and motivation in landscape and nature in general, where ever I am. I must have access to solitude with nature, maybe it’s an obsession or maybe it’s necessary in order to process & create, what ever it is. I am still trying to figure it out and my filmmaking and photography is a reflection of that search.
Collaborating with Vivian, a performance artist within this space has been a new and a reflective experience. Allowing us to work very closely together everyday, has opened a space both in mind and body to a new type of focus and openness in our practices and have fully engaged and intertwined. This experience has empowered our confidence within each other for future collaborations to come”.