Mariana Valencia works through dance and makes self-narrative performances that evoke algorithmic imagery comprised of choreography, ethnography, memoir, and observations of her cross-cultural identifiers.Artist Bio
Arrival surrenders to the unwitnessable through openness and freedom, a practice of presence rather than production and projection. The work adapts to what’s physically possible in pandemic time—losing the bodies we once had has led to this inquiry. Arrival responds to the passing of time, to aging, changing bodies, and asks, “What’s happening within each of us, what’s shifted for you?” The rupture in the process is a teacher, and there’s healing in the rupture. Arrival is performed experience, finding hope in the potentiality of refracture. Through trial and error, failure is legitimated. The opportunity is here to shape and reshape. Movement material is inherently sustainable; what’s passed is past and can also be recalled. Through improvisatory scores of choreography, music, and text, Arrival ruminates on the return to shared space and unresolved grief; it is an embodied interplay between performative polish, rawness, rigor, and distress. In Arrival, the liveness of rehearsal and experience-making questions the rigidity of performance frameworks. The practice is arrival, a constant showing up, and a promise to embodied practice.
Creative Capital Carnival 2023
Mariana Valencia works through dance. She was born in Chicago amidst multicultural collaboration, went to college with a vast constellation of queers in Massachusetts, and in 2006 moved to New York to live as a choreographer. Her studies in dance and ethnography influenced her early works that were wedded to postmodern dance, afro-diasporic, and pan-latin forms. Over the years, Valencia’s work has turned in on herself, making self-narrative performances that evoke algorithmic imagery comprised of choreography, ethnography, memoir, and observations of her cross-cultural identifiers. Valencia has held numerous residencies and received awards for her choreography, the most notable being the 2018 Bessie Award for Outstanding “Breakout” Choreographer, a 2019 Lower Manhattan Cultural Council Extended Life grant, a 2018 Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grant to Artists Award, and a 2015–16 Jerome Travel and Study grant; she was also an artist in the Whitney Biennial 2019. Valencia’s choreography and work reaches beyond the stage: in 2019, she published two books of performance texts, Mariana Valencia’s Bouquet (3 Hole Press) and Album (Wendy’s Subway).