Benjamin Kamino gave his artist’s talk entitled Aura, Carriance & “dead things” at Neutral Ground in Regina this week. His active touring works include a solo-dance (Nudity. Desire) and a duet (m/Other). Most recently, he has been working with Lars Jan, Clara Furey, Virgil Baruchal, and Peggy Baker Dance Projects. As a teacher Kamino hosts classes on dance technique, composition, and further study towards other radical and experimental perspectives on dance, choreography, and performance. Kamino was one of the inaugural curators at Dancemakers (Toronto) alongside Emi Forster. He is the 2016 recipient of the TAF Emerging Artist Award and is currently pursuing his MA in Choreography at DAS Graduate School (Amsterdam).
1. Jan Zwicky
A dear human once lent me a book of poetry entitled Songs for Relinquishing the Earth. Deeply in love with the woman who lent it to me, I read it to see deeper into her mind and her interests. We no longer speak – the woman who lent me the book – but I read her favourite poem almost daily: The Geology of Norway. I think Zwicky studied geology before studying philosophy and before writing poetry. Or maybe it happened all at once. If so or un-so, I love this idea of a slow decline from empiricism throughout one’s living/working… from the hard facts of the study of rocks… to the trickier mutability through a study of knowledge… and finally the loitering of pure abstraction in language vis-a-vis… poetry.
2. Bracha L. Ettinger
She is a painter and psychoanalyst and writer who lives in a place… you should ask her about it. Her painting works take years to complete. She paints and erases and paints and erases almost endlessly. Her paintings have figures, although she does not paint figuratively. Instead she paints through a psychic resonance of colour and aura. Her work is a feeling to me. Her work in psychoanalysis is a feminine breakthrough in the field. I read her book annually to remember what I am working on.
3. Su-Feh Lee/battery opera
She is an artist who is very busy with dance and choreography. That is not why I love her. It is her slow-compassion for others. It is the way she honours time and people actively in every effort and proclivity and desire. Her work is a true marriage of ethics and aesthetics. Su-Feh taught me that to work in dance is to at once be taking care of oneself and all others. Please take a peek at her website.
4. Amelia Ehrhardt
She works out of Toronto. She calls herself a choreographer. She is a dancer and a curator and a choreographer. She has been working for a long time now making space for others to work and take stage. Her efforts are always generously directed outward. She is finally starting to play her own work on stages across Canada and I just heard she will be taking off to Europe this summer. This woman is so very excellent at what she does. I am always so impressed at her intellectual acumen. Again, please take time to peak at her site.
5. Ame Henderson
Every single time I go to work I think of this artist. Every time I even think about the work I do I think of this artist. I remember she once turned to me and said, “Being-in-doing, Ben. That’s what we are working on.” I think it was in the kitchen at the Gibraltar Point Arts Centre. Ame taught me, and she continues to remind me, that to work in dance is to work with people, that working in dance must always put people first as its subject, object, content, message, purpose, and resource. Ame is my hero. She has a new work titled Other Jesus being worked on in Toronto. You can help them out by making a donation or buying a ticket.
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