UW–Madison students and Interdisciplinary Artist-in-Residence Carrie Hanson present “From Topic to Topography: Mapping Issues through Movement” event on Nov. 21

Carrie Hanson, the fall 2019 University of Wisconsin–Madison Division of the ArtsInterdisciplinary Artist-in-Residence, and students will present “From Topic to Topography: Mapping Issues through Movement” at the Chazen Museum of Art in the lobby of the new building (750 University Ave.) on Thursday, Nov. 21 at 6 p.m. The event is free and open to the public and features an installation of short, repeating movement performances in galleries throughout the museum.

Carrie Hanson dancing with The Seldoms
Image courtesy of the artist.

Carrie Hanson is a choreographer, educator and the artistic director of The Seldoms. She uses dance and performance to reference social, political and environmental issues. She has designed projects with practitioners of visual arts, theater, music/sound design, fashion and architecture.

This final residency event on Nov. 21 will feature a group performance from students in Carrie Hanson’s interdisciplinary arts course, as well as their independent projects. Contributing to this performance are Anne Asher, Heather Good, Jessica Lanius, Sarah Meltzer, Marcia Miquelon, Mariel Schneider, Alice Svetic and Jim Vogel. The students in Hanson’s class represent a wide range of interests including dance, circus arts, theater, social justice, improvisation, health education and lighting design.

Participants surround charcoal rubbings laid out on grass.
Photo: Mats Rudels

The culminating event will also integrate a visual artwork created by residency guest artist Faheem Majeed. The piece incorporates charcoal rubbings of multiple campus sites made by participants during “Quilting Memory: A Live Action in Charcoal & Muslin” in Sept. That event was designed to bring awareness to the history of the Teejop lands, including the erasure and presence of significant spaces – usually in plain sight and often unnoticed.

During the semester, Hanson introduced students to her “Cross-disciplinary Toolbox,” a platform dedicated to invention where participants share their processes that inform their practices and future works. Students explored several concepts through movement and classroom discussion. They worked independently, and with others, to create original performance works that reference the body within the larger ecosystem; articulate perspectives about environmental sustainability, vitality, and equity; and use art to convey persuasive messages.

“This semester-long residency provided a welcome, rare opportunity to integrate the various strands of my artistic practice and research, and to be present in the classroom/studio as an artist and teacher, in equal measure. I have tried to focus on two facets of making embodied performance — first, that we understand and articulate our methods, our tools, and second, that we consider the purview of dance and physical performance to be without limits — in other words, that dance can communicate complex ideas. The students in this course have come along with me with exquisite curiosity and surprising ideas, forging new tools and expanding their — and my — perspectives on dance.” – Carrie Hanson

Residency guest artists included Faheem Majeed, a sculptor and social practice artist and Alex Rose, a biologist, founder of ocean conservation company Blue Ring and underwater photographer. The Seldoms, Hanson’s Chicago-based dance company, will perform with Kate Corby and Dancers from Nov. 14-16 with an excerpt from “Exit Disclaimer.” All guest artists led workshops and presented to the students in the course. Rose also spoke at a highlight event of the 2019 Wisconsin Science Festival, “Big Ideas for Busy People: Water, Water, Everywhere.”

Event Details

Name: From Topic to Topography: Mapping Issues through Movement

When: Thursday, Nov. 21 | 6 – 8 p.m.

Where: Chazen Museum of Art – lobby, new building | 750 University Ave., Madison

Cost: Free and open to the public

The November 21 event offers a mosaic of both performance styles and also the particular research interests of the course participants. Ranging from theatrical to pedestrian, and solitary to interactive, these independent movement projects reflect our shared creative process of “distilling” and “mapping” subject matter through embodiment. The works proceed from the belief that the body and movement can compellingly speak to complex and varied subjects.

Carrie Hanson’s residency is presented by the UW–Madison Division of the Arts and hosted by the Dance Department with Kate Corby as lead faculty. Co-sponsors include the Chazen Museum of Art, the Wisconsin Union Theater and the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies.

After the fall residency is completed, Hanson and The Seldoms will return to Madison for the world premiere of “Floe” at the Wisconsin Union Theater from Jan. 22-24, 2020. Floe is a new dance theater work regarding climate change, especially about the impacts of global warming with melting ice.