Thank You BODYTRAFFIC

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It’s been our mission to find work that is undeniably beautiful and that allows people to find passion, belief, and escape through artistic forms. Through the BODYTRAFFIC Residency at the Acadiana Center for the Arts, expectations were far exceeded. 

Serving as a breakthrough for dance in the Acadiana area, BODYTRAFFIC served the community through a beautiful performance and by interacting with residents through various outreach projects. From teaching three master classes to visiting Prairie Elementary School and the Miles Perret Cancer Centerthe company was immersed in culture and felt what it is to be a part of Acadiana. 

After building relationships through outreach projects, Tina Finkelman Berkett, Artistic Director of BODYTRAFFIC, expressed how powerful and personal it was to perform and recognize many of the faces in the crowdShe mentioned that the energy was different; more personal; and that the dancers could feel that on stage.

BODYTRAFFIC’s tour stop in Lafayette proved to be not only a performance, but also an immersion of culture and a precursor for change in the local dance community. The company was impacted by southern hospitality, community connection, and passion for art in all forms. The Acadiana Center for the Arts could not be more grateful for BODYTRAFFIC’s professionalism and level of engagement as stewards in our city, and we look forward to hosting the company again in the future.

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BODYTRAFFIC Education & Outreach Schedule

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BODYTRAFFIC is known for dynamic theatricality and refreshing abandon. Based in Los Angeles and founded by Lillian Barbeito and Tina Finkelman Berkett in 2007, BODYTRAFFIC has surged to the forefront of the concert dance world and was named one of Dance Magazine’s “25 to Watch” in 2013 and the “company of the future” by the Joyce Theater Foundation. As an internationally acclaimed contemporary dance company, audiences are enveloped by the company’s sheer joy of dance.  Known for commissioning today’s most distinctive choreographers, BODYTRAFFIC’s Lafayette debut will include works by Barak Marshall, Victor Quijada and Richard Siegal.
Education and Outreach Schedule

Outreach
Thursday, March 3, 2016
BODYTRAFFIC will hold two master classes for the University of Louisiana at Lafayette’s Dance Department. This event is closed to the public.
Master Class — This event is open to the public
Thursday, March 3, 2016 –  5-6:30pm
$5, or free with pre-purchase ticket to BODYTRAFFIC Performance
AcA’s James Devin Moncus Theater
Named by Dance Magazine as one of the 25 to watch, BODYTRAFFIC is a L.A. -based contemporary dance company known for its unique repertoire. This class will incorporate a short warm-up and the opportunity to learn sections of the company’s diverse repertory by some of the most distinctive choreographic voices today. To register contact Paige Krause at paige@AcadianaCenterfortheArts.org/337.233.7060 ex. 232
Education
Friday, March 4, 2016
BODYTRAFFIC will work with a 2nd grade PACE (AcA’s year-round arts residency program) classroom at Prairie Elementary. This event is closed to the public.
Outreach
Friday, March 4, 2016
In collaboration with Clare Cook Dance, BODYTRAFFIC will guide a movement therapy class with Miles Perret Cancer Services. This event is closed to the public.

ArtBox Artist Profile: Dirk Guidry

Dirk Guidry

ArtBox artist, Dirk Guidry, is working on a new commissioned mural for the recently remodeled Lafayette, Wyndham Garden Hotel on Pinhook. Painting directly on the walls of the hotel’s restaurant, Guidry visually describes a quintessential Louisiana bayou scene in his unique style. We got a chance to sit down with Guidry and discuss his most recent commission and it’s importance for the hotel’s Grand Re-Opening on October 1st.

Growing up in Galliano, Louisiana, Guidry recalls his youth near Bayou Lafourche and the influence it has had on his work. Speaking about the mural, he says that the scene is “very close to home.” Referencing the freshness and purity of the Bayou Lafourche area and his experience of it. The mural depicts a painterly interpretation of shrimp boats docked after a day at sea.

When Guidry spoke about his subject matter, he recalls the raw nature of the area, telling a story about purchasing seafood right from the boats on which it was caught. “It doesn’t get much fresher than that,” he says.

The righthand side of the mural’s composition features a pelican. When we asked about it, Guidry replied with a vivid memory.

“I wanted to make sure to throw a pelican in there, just because that was one of my favorite times of the year… the pelicans would migrate down and they would just fill up the bayou. They’d fill up the docks. As you’re driving down highway 1, they would be flying right along side you over the bayou.”

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Much like the pelicans he vividly recalls, Guidry migrated to Lafayette in 2005, attending the University of Louisiana at Lafayette. It was a “nice change” he said of the area. Noting that even though this area is different, it is almost the same. “I still felt at home” he said. Initially concentrating in computer animation, Guidry recalls his journey to an eventual concentration in painting as a thirst to experience the tactility of a medium, as opposed to the clicking and rendering in computer animation. Regarding painting, he said, “I fell in love with the process of painting, the process of getting my hands dirty. I missed washing my hands after my drawing classes and watching the sink turn black…”

When asked if he considers himself a public artist, he mentioned that he finds a nice middle ground between his commissions and his visual style. Though he prefers creating large scale abstracts, he says, “I don’t get bogged down on [abstraction]… I like to put my talents to use, whether it be in portraiture, landscape, or abstracts.” In the hotel’s mural, he was given full flexibility to incorporate his characteristic brushwork in the piece. “I’m proud to say it’s me,” he says of the work.

Guidry says that he prefers not to conceptualize his work, he would rather the work speak for itself. When describing his abstracts he says, “I don’t know what I’m painting a lot of the time in my abstract pieces. It’s just me painting. It’s me and the paint… and emotions… strong emotions.” Talking about his journey as a painter, he says he often thinks in retrospect:

“Looking back at some of my early paintings…you can tell that through the trials my color just started to work as I did it. The more I practiced. I’ve been told I have a very signature application, and when people see it, they recognize, ‘That’s Dirk.’”

With regard to his body of work, Guidry makes reference to the journey of painting, not just in one piece of work, but overarching. “[Painting] is a big process, and I like where it’s going,” he says.

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Experience Season 5

AcA Season 5

Here on Vermilion Street we’ve unveiled our 5th season and we couldn’t be more thrilled! A season filled with fantastic musicians, composers, dancers, visual artists, acrobats and much more showcases  the many dimensions of creativity in Acadiana. We can’t wait  for you to experience it.

Incredible AllStar artists will take our Moncus Theater stage in the coming months for a series of intimate performances you won’t forget. Alabama soul stars St. Paul and the Broken Bones will get everybody dancing so we are transforming our theater into a partial standing room; old school Country star Lee Ann Womack brings a new Album named best country album of the year by Rolling Stone Mag; and Shovels & Rope, with their haunting vocal harmonies are also stopping over with a new album in their bags.

Our Louisiana Crossroads series features artists such as Buddy Guy, Rhiannon Giddens & Dirk Powell, George Porter Jr & Runnin’ Pardners and The Blind Boys of Alabama, a lineup that highlights nuances of Southern music. Our Crossroads series also includes special performances featuring local artists exploring the field recordings of Alan Lomax and the unmistakeable fingerprint of gospel music.

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With a world-class jazz lineup, we think it’s important to create a cool club atmosphere for you to experience the vibrant history of jazz music. We transform our acoustically perfect Moncus Theater into a table seating arrangement, so you are able to connect with 16-time Grammy winning jazz legend Paquito D’Rivera, whose artistry with Latin Jazz has yielded over 30 solo albums. Fred Hersch, a piano prodigy of unbounded imagination and ambition will thrill you and the New Orleans father-son duo Ellis and Delfeayo Marsalis brings their hard- swinging band to AcA.

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In dance and theater, Los Angeles based BODYTRAFFIC takes our stage after a three-day residency, for a performance that has helped to establish Los Angeles as a growing center for contemporary dance. Local theater groups, The Teasippers’ Theatre Company and Acting Up (in acadiana), return to our stage to delight their audiences once again with their rich performances.

We have so much to show you, and can’t wait to see you experience the arts right here in Acadiana. Check out the full lineup for AcA’s Season 5 at AcadianaCenterfortheArts.org

PLAYing with Geometry

People usually ask what came first when creating a performance? Was it the choreography, music, costumes, set? Well in this interview, we know the Star Tetrahedron that James Wise designed for the set of PLAY came before the project PLAY! Not sure how they finally found one another, but that is something we hope to discover in our interview with artist James Wise. Our Residency @ the Center coordinator, Paige Krause, talked about his collaboration with Theresa Wasiloski and his Star Tetrahedron sculptures that invite anyone to climb, swing, hang and PLAY on them!

Paige: So James, tell us how and why you started designing star tetrahedron sculptures?

James: I became interested in sacred geometry 10 years ago when a friend showed me the work of Drunvalo. I was drawn to the simplicity and mysticism, but also to the tangible feel it gave to the energetic world. The star tetrahedron, for me is a symbol, representing the point where the observer and the universe are connected. One day I had a bunch of bamboo, and I just decided to build a star tetrahedron. I knew it was a beautiful shape, but I had no idea how much fun it would be to play on one.

Paige: Another interesting element is the material you use and recycle to create the pieces. Can you give us details on the process of collecting and creating the work?

James: I use bamboo, sourced locally, and recycled bike tubes from local bike shops. Bike tubes are a great resource because they provide superior binding power that offers flexibility and they get a second life before they go to a landfill. Bamboo is amazingly beautiful, natural and ethereal, just being around it makes you appreciate natural form and balance. It grows so fast, is so strong, and yet also mostly hollow; even the “woody” parts of it are filled with air holes.

Paige: So tell us more about the collaboration between yourself and Theresa. How did the conversation begin and what excites you most about working with her on the piece PLAY?

James: Theresa heard that I had made things out of bamboo, and we got together and started talking. I suggested star tetrahedrons made from bamboo as props, movable, climbable, set pieces. She liked the idea and we went from there. I’m super exited to see the pieces used in a stage production, especially one as fun as PLAY.

Paige: An element that I think is exciting is that you create these pieces with the intention of encouraging play for someone that might discover them, like in a public space. With this collaboration, you have a choreographer that approaches you because her intention is to create a piece of work all around the idea of play! Have you observed rehearsals and seen the dancers interactions on the star tetrahedrons?

James: Yes, I’ve seen one little teaser during an ArtWalk, it was defiantly playful, I liked it. I think these structures would do well in public spaces, people love to climb and swing on things.

Paige: So what are you excited to see from the collaboration?

James: I’m looking forward to seeing how the star tetrahedrons are manipulated on the stage. They can easily be turned so that only two corners are touching the ground, or rolled, or put on one point so the appearance of two pyramids passing through each other is apparent. It will be awesome to see how people move through them, or on them.

Paige: So what are you currently working on and where can we find more about your work?

James: Currently I’m working on furniture – tables mostly – made from reclaimed wood, with cement tops. It’s modern rustic furniture. Find out more by talking to me or send a telegram, or email. jameswise1984@gmail.com

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Paige: So how does James PLAY?

James: I play everyday in every way.

Paige: Thanks, James! We can’t wait to see your pieces in the production of PLAY!

James: Thank you so much. I can’t wait to see the production.

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Great Opportunities for Artists and Organizations

The mission of Acadiana Center for the Arts is to foster arts and culture in the community. In keeping with that mission, we have fantastic opportunities for local artists and organizations alike. With public art projects like ArtBox, ArtSpark artist stipends, and grant programs like DAF FY 2016, AcA provides a wealth of opportunities for local artists and organizations and in that becomes a genuine steward of the arts in Acadiana.

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ArtBox Call to Artists

The Application deadline for the ArtBox Project is quickly approaching and we need the help of local visual artists to transform the traffic boxes around Lafayette into beautiful pieces of public art. The goal of the ArtBox Project is to create pieces of public art that represent our city, its people and our culture, giving our community a sense of place.

To be eligible, an applicant must be an individual or organization (school, community group, etc) residing in Lafayette Parish. Organizations will require a single contact person.

Download the ArtBox Project Guidelines here.

Download the ArtBox Project Application here.
In partnership with Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) and Lafayette Convention and Visitors Center (LCVC), the Acadiana Center for the Arts (AcA) is managing ArtBox in a multi-phase project.

There is a $500 honorarium for selected artwork!

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ArtSpark Stipend Program for Artists
LEDA and Acadiana Center for the Arts have come together to present an individual artist stipend program, ArtSpark. The purpose of ArtSpark is to directly support artists in Acadiana, especially to those with otherwise limited opportunities, to expand their bodies of work as a professional. These stipends offer assistance to emerging, mid-career, and mature artists for specific, short-term projects that have a clear benefit to the artist and their development.

*Application deadline April 17th, 2015.*

Download the ArtSpark Guidelines here.

Download the ArtSpark Application here.

ArtSpark Assistance Workshop

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DAF FY 2016
Decentralized Arts Funding (DAF) is an arts grant program created and funded by the Louisiana Division of the Arts, Office of Cultural Development, Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism. The Acadiana Center for the Arts administers this statewide, parish-by-parish program for Region 4, which includes Acadia, Evangeline, Iberia, Lafayette, St. Landry, St. Martin, St. Mary and Vermilion Parishes. Eligible applicants are non-profit arts organizations, non-profit organizations, government agencies, schools and schools boards, colleges and universities, as well as individuals using a fiscal agent.

Application deadline is Friday, June 19, 2015 for projects taking place between October 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016

For more information on DAF FY 2016, visit http://www.acadianacenterforthearts.org/decentralized-arts-funding