Maceo Paisley is a Los Angeles based dancer, thinker, and optimist who uses art as a means to investigate the human condition, make critical interrogation of social structures, and find personal healing. For the past 10 years his, work has ranged from commercial dance with the like of Black Eyed Peas, and Justin Timberlake, to performance art installations at Marciano Foundations and Museum of Contemporary Art – Los Angeles.
Dynamite is a performance based experience, that is both an extension of the artists movement work, and context for the recently published Tao Of Maceo book (Correspondence Print, 2019).
Maceo will be performing Dynamite at PLAYGROUND DETROIT on Friday, May 31st at 7:30pm.
There will be elements of dance and other movement, poetry and other uses of language, as well as some opportunities for us to interact with the ideas expressed in the work. Expect it to be an exhibition of emotive physicality used as caveat to deep cerebral inquiry, undergirded by an attempt at reaching a spiritual quality that is as equally messy and divine as the human experience.
The central theme of both the film and the performance work are that we all have the agency to be self-defining to some extent. The performance walks through the challenges and nuances of that process, and the film is a more visceral depiction of it. Both are meant to inspire people to claim that agency and move towards being as self-determinant as they can.
“I don’t really think of my approach to dance differently than to painting or to writing. The work all stems from me and then it’s categorized by medium after the fact. I think all art is somewhat of a performance, all artists are performance artists, but we work in different mediums.”Maceo Paisley
What was the impetus for touring Dynamite across the US?
Traveling with the work really is to make it accessible to the various local communities. I think the message is deeply human and works well in the context of Anglo-European dominant cultures where there are a lot of rules, repression, and oppression that can hinder people from being expressive.
The other impetus is to connect to independent, radical, and artist-run spaces to understand their place in the creative climate of their region and see if their spaces can be ones connected to a network of others that provide art based programs for emotional health.
Do you feel that there has been an audience in a particular place that responded to the work in a unique way?
So far, the places have been wonderful and I think if anything there is something common to the response that affirms the value of the work for me and keeps me on the go. The momentum is one that has been so inspiring, and precious.
Books will be available for purchase and signing after the exhibition.
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