In "Untamed Space," Renegade Performance Group and choreographer André M. Zachery offer a compelling look at 21st-century African American identity through the lens of maroon colonies. These independent communities were established in the 17th and 18th centuries by self-liberated Africans who escaped slavery by fleeing to mountains, forests, and other hard-to-reach areas after arriving in the Americas. "Untamed Space" considers the spiritual dimensions and lasting influence of these settlements, or as Zachery calls them, “impassible spaces.”
This interdisciplinary dance work is the latest installment in Zachery’s "AFROFUTURISM" series, an ongoing exploration and reinterpretation of black culture through technology. Combining abstract projections, original music and sound design, and movement styles that range from modern to hip-hop, "Untamed Space" traces the trajectory of marooning and migration across time and space. Drawing in part on the choreographer’s own family history, this work will transport you from Haiti to Mississippi, and, “arriving at my point of departure in Chicago,” as Zachery explains, propel you forward “into the Afrofuture,” a “space where Blackness [is] unlimited.”
More about the artist:
André M. Zachery’s artistic practice, scholarly research, and community engagement focus on merging choreography, technology, and black cultural practices through multimedia work. Founded in 2007 and based in Brooklyn, Renegade Performance Group has performed in the US and abroad and received residencies, awards, and commissions from such institutions as Danspace Project and the Studio Museum in Harlem. A 2016 New York Foundation for the Arts Gregory Millard Fellow in choreography, Zachery has taught at Brooklyn College, been a guest faculty member at Florida State University and Virginia Commonwealth University, and will be artist-in-residence at Ohio State’s Department of Dance in fall 2018.
The Wexner Center for the Arts is an NPN/VAN Partner of the National Performance Network/Visual Artists Network (NPN/VAN). This project is made possible in part by support from the NPN/VAN Artist Engagement Fund. Major contributors include the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, and the National Endowment for the Arts (a federal agency). For more information visit www.npnweb.org.