The Center’s new publication, The Sentient Archive: Bodies, Performance, and Memory, available now from Wesleyan University Press, gathers the work of artists and cultural practitioners in dance, architecture, science, and the visual arts with essays that illustrate how the body serves as a repository for knowledge.
Here, we offer a peek into the book’s pages, with an essay excerpt from Brooklyn-based artist Sarah Crowner, who questions the idea of a painting as “fixed and static,” and proposes that a painting is “an archive of all the actions and gestures that surround it.”
As she describes below, Crowner’s installations often engage with performative actions, as well as the surrounding environment, with the intent of inviting visitors into an immersive, embodied experience.
In her latest project, Crowner collaborated with choreographer Jessica Lang to produce the scenery and costumes for the world premiere of a new work for American Ballet Theatre, which opens on October 19. The Guggenheim Museum hosts Crowner, Lang, and ABT dancers for an evening of dance and discussion on October 7 and 8, as part of the museum’s Works & Process performing arts series.
“Painting is a kind of a medium and is really an archive of all the actions and gestures that surround it: the embodied movements inherent in making the object…but also of the dances around it and in front of it as it exists in the world.”—Sarah Crowner