Movement with Meaning: Dance, Identity, Knowledge

Wed 24 February 2021, 7pm - 9pm at Online

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(Photo credit: Still from The Injunction by Sam Williams + Joe Moran)

Through discussion and film, this online event will explore how dance produces meaning for audiences and dancers. Engaging with Kathak, ballet, contemporary dance and vernacular dance forms, it will consider dance's intersections with memory, migration and identity, both individual and collective. Drawing on Arianna Maiorani's recently published Kinesemiotics: Modelling How Choreographed Movement Means in Space, and the forthcoming Bodies of Knowledge book, edited by Radar's Producer Laura Purseglove, it will bring together dancers, choreographers, artists and academics to consider how dance uses the body - and how bodies use dance - to tell stories about who we are, have been, and might become. It will also explore methods that might be used to derive meanings from dance.

The event will feature Arianna Maiorani introducing themes from her book Kinesemiotics, published by Routledge in 2020. Drawing on her work with English National Ballet, it offers a new adaptable model and means of analysis for understanding forms of movement-based communication, such as dance, that use a codified language shared by a community of users. Following this, there will be a screening of Sam Williams + Joe Moran's short film The Injunction, produced using footage from workshops exploring embodied knowledge with dancers and wrestlers. Contributors to Bodies of Knowledge will then draw on their experiences as dancers, choreographers, researchers and artists working with or with dancers to explore how dancers of various forms combine personal and collective histories, memories, identities and hopes.


This event is free but booking is essential. Please click here to book.


TARA FATEHI IRANI is an artist, writer and performer. She has been working across yearlong daily projects, performance, theatre, video, music, spoken word, dance and writing since 2006. Her work is primarily concerned with the ephemeral interactions between memories, words, bodies and sites. She has performed at the Royal Academy of Arts, SPILL Festival, Nuffield Theatre, Battersea Arts Centre, Toynbee Studios, Chelsea Theatre, HighFest and Molavi Theatre amongst other international sites. ​ Tara regularly collaborates with other artists, musicians, choreographers and writers. She is half of /gorizazmarkaz/ alongside composer and musician Pouya Ehsaei and is part of DARC (Documentation Action Research Collective) ​ Tara's work has been published in several peer-reviewed journals and publications. Her book Mishandled Archive is published by LADA (2020). She completed a PhD at University of Roehampton, London (2020) through which she proposed mishandling as a way to engage with archives through multivocality, pyromania, mythology and web‑archaeography.

JULIA GIESE is a PhD Researcher within the Institute for Media and Creative Industries at Loughborough University London. She is interested in the embodied memories of the 1947 Partition of British India, the 1971 Liberation War of Bangladesh and the subsequent migration to London among the female Bangladeshi diaspora in Tower Hamlets, London. Julia holds an MA in Global Studies for which she studied at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin in Germany, Stellenbosch University in South Africa and Jawaharlal-Nehru-University in India. She completed a BA in Political Science at Universität Hamburg in Germany and Linnéuniversitetet in Sweden. Her achievements have been substantiated by multiple work experiences in the academic sector and in different women-centred organisations.

ARIANNA MAIORANI is Senior Lecturer in Linguistics at the School of Arts, English and Drama at Loughborough University, UK. Her main research interests are Discourse Analysis and Multimodal Semiotics. She is particularly interested in interdisciplinary work that focuses on the application of linguistic and semiotic analytical frameworks to the study of multimodal discourse strategies.

JOE MORAN is a British-Irish artist and choreographer based in London with a wide-ranging practice incorporating theatre and gallery performance, curatorial projects, lecture-performance, drawing and spray paint works. Joe is Artistic Director of Dance Art Foundation through which his performance and curatorial work is produced. He is currently in residence at Wysing Arts Centre and is a Dance4 Associate Artist. Recent and forthcoming commissions and performances include Sadler’s Wells (2019), The Lowry (2019), London Contemporary Dance School (2019), Wysing Arts Centre (2018), Bluecoat (2018) coinciding with the Liverpool Biennial, Kettle’s Yard (2018), Sadler’s Wells (2017), Whitechapel Gallery (2017), Delfina Foundation (2016), Block Universe/ fig-2 at the ICA (2015) and DRAF (Frieze 2014). Joe contributed to the publication Who Cares? Dance in the Gallery & Museum and Nothing About Us Without Us, a recently commissioned essay on artist advocacy was published by Siobhan Davies Dance in November.

KESHA RAITHATHA is a British Asian female dancer and choreographer. Her primary training is in Kathak under her mother, Priti Raithatha and Nilima Devi M.B.E. with whom she accomplished 6 National ISTD examinations. Since 2009, Kesha has divided her time between India and the UK training in Kathak, Contemporary, Kalari Payattu, and various Indian folk forms whilst performing under celebrated Indian Classical and Contemporary dance artists and companies. Kesha is extremely keen to utilise her position in the arts sector to generate a constant flow of creativity between artists of India and the UK alongside making work that is relevant or even taboo to the current social and political climate.