Joy Cosculluela & The Wayfinding Performance Group
We are a collaborative group of women dance artists dedicated to excavating, shaping and reshaping personal material into the performing arts. We work with dance/ movement as our primary language, integrated with writing, drawing, speaking, and making installations to generate performance material.
A Long Short Story
The word "wayfinding" holds special meaning for me. Wayfinding refers to navigation. How people and animals orient themselves in space and navigate from place to place. This resonates with me strongly as an immigrant, artist, woman, modern day human being grappling with multiple challenges.
Wayfinding is about how we navigate life --- where we come from, getting lost and trying to find our way as we encounter all forms of obstacles in today's world. Our fragmented lives require us to ask with more compassion, courage, and curiosity: how can we respond to trauma or crisis and live a more meaningful life in relationship to people and places?
Wayfinding connects with people and places that become guides and fellow travelers in our journeys.
Historically, it refers to the traditional navigational methods used by Pacific Islanders. How they voyaged with masterful knowledge of the seas, the stars, the elements without modern technology. Wayfinding is deeply situated in the somatic body
and moves out into the environment. We learn who we are and how to relate to the world through our bodies and movement.
Translated into modern times, with technology that can open up new possibilities for expression, I am motivated by questions that evoke how we can move in this world with more awareness and interconnectedness. Tuning in to our bodily sensations, feelings, and imagination, what are we learning about disconnectedness and oppressive structures (internal and external) that cause pain and suffering? What are the ways we can work with our bodies and share humanity? To move means we have the potential to reimagine and transform ourselves. Art unlocks the imagination, disrupts the familiar, and opens new ways of thinking and acting.
I experiment with other mediums such as video, text, installation, and audience proximity in space. I experiment with how my body and voice can take space and become visible. What borders do I / we cross, physically and metaphorically?
Wayfinding is a practice that cultivates the art of collaboration and collective creativity, which is at the heart of my performance practice. I find great satisfaction in co-creating with other artists who share a similar purpose in life. We come together as a community of risk-takers and create space to provoke, encourage, and breathe life into a vision. Our collaboration restores, reconnects and rehumanizes us.