To Imagine What Is Lost
Hanji artist Aimee Lee and I worked together this month through a residency made possible through New Music USA's New Music Creator Fund. We weaved our conversations and ideas through the physical labor of Korean papermaking at Aimee's newly built Hanji studio near Cleveland, OH. We stripped milkweed stems of their tough outer layers and pounded the inner fibers together to join individual strands into a whole. What emerged was a question, “when so many stories and memories of Korean and Korean American women are lost and silenced because of racism, patriarchy, war, and immigration, what is left for the descendants to hold?” It was customary in Korea for hundreds of years to bury the dead with their letters, personal clothing, and clothing of loved ones. Seeing the pictures of items discovered from modern-day excavations of these tombs and reading the discovered letters in Epistolary Korea inspired us to collect what little is left and imagine stories and memories through created paper and sound.
Composer Mathew Fuerst wrote a beautiful and electrifying violin and piano sonata which he and I premiered at the Nebraska Music Teachers Association Conference in October. I was also at Jacob's Pillow in the same month with George de la Peña, Michael Sakamoto, and Asher Hartman to develop and compose a new work through the Pillow Lab Residency. Personal stories intertwined with George's embodiment of dancer-choreographer Vaslav Nijinsky in the film Nijinsky and Michael's history with Butoh continue to inform the work.
I’ve been learning more about Liz Lerman's Critical Response Process (CRP), a method for giving and receiving feedback on work in progress, from the book Critique is Creative. It's incredibly exciting to contemplate multiple uses for this process, individual or group (e.g. practice session, masterclass, rehearsal), that goes beyond the binary right/wrong and expert/novice. This podcast interview and Liz Lerman’s website hold many info and resources about CRP.
(pc. Joy Jarme)
Lastly, there is some exciting news coming, and I'm looking forward to sharing it with you soon. Stay tuned and happy holidays everyone!