Jamila Johnson Small

Class Description | Morning Class | 25 February - 1 March 2019

These classes are spaces where I try to make an opening in myself to share current questions, concerns and interests through practice that is part of a project towards disentangling myself from assimilationist approaches. Moving from and through and with states of overwhelm, using the density of available sensory and remembered information, our interior worlds stacked with casts of living, subjective data that can be used as tools for divination.

Or, in other words: some dancing with some words and sounds to provoke and encourage.

Biography

Jamila makes shows for all kinds of venues under the name Last Yearz Interesting Negro that work with in-between spaces, syncopation, trance states, internal narratives, intensities, overwhelm, electronic music, and small dances to affect/disrupt/deflect/distort/reflect gaze(s) directed towards their body, and to cope with Being. Resultant choreographies are stage/dreamspace/battleground, working through questions of presence, visibility, responsibility and pleasure, building atmospheric landscapes through the live unfolding of the tensions between things that produce meaning, for situating and expanding (or dismantling) their ‘identity’ and turning it into theatre. Works involve video, text and sculpture, and in these spaces liveness is considered as a situation of exchange, a quality, a proposition, a system of relations and in addressing the agency of the spectator, considering choreographic space as social space in order to facilitate immersive, emergent spaces for performer/s and spectator/s.

Jamila collaborates with Alexandrina Hemsley as Project O and works regularly with other artists including Phoebe Collings-James, Fernanda Muñoz-Newsome, Shelley Parker and Rowdy SS. Her practice moves from dancing into writing, curating and hosting spaces for conversation and artistic exchange.