An Artist Residency in Motherhood for people who make both children and art. Conceived and organized by Emma Jaster.
People participate from anywhere in the world, committing to make one art piece to post on instagram every Friday in response to a prompt from another member of the group. The response can be in any medium. It is an opportunity to explore and share an artistic practice from within the perspective and realities of parenting. We probe into questions of caretaking, partnership, gender roles, womanhood, but also branch out as the mood or the news strike: spaghetti and border control are totally fair game.
Follow #mamaisamaker and @mamaisamaker
Participate The next round will be Spring 2019, check back in February for a link to submit.
Laura Ajayi (BFA ‘09, University of Lethbridge) is a mother-artist and educator based in Ottawa, Ontario. In addition to the productive work of mothering, Ajayi has exhibited her work nationally and facilitated studio arts programming in Ontario, Alberta and Nunavut. She has been featured in publications in New York and the United Kingdom and has recently been accepted to the MOTHRA Parent-Artists Residency in Toronto. Ajayi has an immersive, home-based practice that is informed by the sensory and intellectual load of domestic life and child-rearing. Rooted in the tradition of self-portraiture, Ajayi works primarily in drawing, fiber arts and photography to explore relationships between sensuality and domesticity, perceptions of feminine identities, and the (abject) maternal.
Beatrice Basso is ensemble member with Affinity Project. She co-devises, performs, and directs an in-process series with actress Valentina Emeri on migration, loss, and dislocation, presented at Diasporas Festival, Cutting Ball Theater, and Z Space. She has launched and dramaturged new play processes with writers including Julia Cho, Ursula Rani Sarma, and Christina Anderson, and directed Anna Moench’s Mothers at WNPF. Bea’s translations/adaptations have been produced at Santa Cruz Shakespeare, OSF, and A.C.T. She served as Long Wharf Theatre’s Literary Manager, A.C.T.’s Director of New Work, and now curates Práctica, a platform for artists practicing north and south of the Tijuana/San Diego border. She taught at Yale School of Drama, A.C.T., and UCSD. She is a graduate in theater and classics from the University of Padua, Italy, and of Wesleyan University’s Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance.
Cartwright (b. 1986) is an artist originally from the Houston, Texas area currently based in Boulder, Colorado. Disloyal to any particular medium, she works within and between painting, drawing, sculpture, performance, installation, photography and video. She has merged her experience as a single mother into her artistic practice to address issues related to the transgression inherent in the mother-artist duality. Her work is often project-based and influenced by feminist theory and existential phenomenology. Cartwright has exhibited in Houston at Lawndale Arts Center, Project Row Houses, and with the Texas-French Alliance’s “Open The Door” public art project. She has worked with artist collective M12 for “School As Experimental Medium” at the Museum of Outdoor Arts in Englewood, Colorado, and is currently collaborating with L.A. based collective The Finishing School for an exhibition at the Boulder Contemporary Art Museum. She has shown as part of the Boulder Contemporary Art Museum’s “White-Space” exhibition and at Las Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions as part of the Femmes’ Video Art Festival. Cartwright is project manager for the Women Have Wings Art Residency in Boulder and teaches at the University of Colorado Boulder. She received her MFA there, and her BFA from Sam Houston State University.
I am a once and future costume, set and puppet designer. Sometime illustrator. Former docent at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Milliner, tailor and dressmaker, craftsperson. Creator of immersive environments. Creator and teacher of Josephine and Beatrix. Awful baker, but working on it.
Rachel is a Chicago native currently residing in Kiev, Ukraine. She graduated with a BFA in painting from Cornell University and was awarded the DC Mayor's Arts Award for Outstanding Emerging Artist and an Artist Fellowship Program grant from the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities.
My name is Ngone (pronounced “Gonay”) Mbaye. I am a New York City-based yoga instructor.
I received my children’s yoga certifications from Little Flower Yoga, Urban Yoga Foundation and Rainbow Kids Yoga. In 2015, I completed my 200-hour yoga certification at Three Sisters Yoga in New York City. November 2016, I wanted to deepen my yoga knowledge and practice, I completed a 300-hour yoga certification with Three Sisters Yoga. July 2017, I completed a 300-Hour Hatha teacher training in Rishikesh, India. During my 500hr yoga certification, I became so devoted to assisting yogis on their journeys, that I opened my own yoga studio. With the collective, the studio will serve as a supportive space for new and advanced teachers to connect and share the gift of wellness with the community. My intention is to create a community open to a different style of yoga that help us all be creative. Namaste!
Stephanie Miracle is an independent choreographer and teaching artist with one foot in Europe and the other on West Coast. She holds a MFA in Dance 2014 from the University of Maryland and a BA in Dance from Belhaven University 2004. A 2014/15 German Fulbright Fellow in the Performing Arts, Stephanie has focused her research on the embodied practice of tanztheater. She became a certified teacher of Klein Technique™ in 2017. Her teaching practice explores the liveliness of space and the possibilities of a precision and chaos in the body. Stephanie’s choreography has been described as “iconic and nuanced…with an irreverence that makes you smile unconsciously” (Rick Westerkamp, 2014). Her choreographic projects have been presented in Germany, Portugal, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Mexico, Russia, and various cities across the US. As a performer she has worked with Deborah Hay, Shannon Gillen, David Dorfman, Susan Marshall, PWDT, and was company member with FTS for 2 years. She is the director of Fakers Club and guest choreographer for Folkwang Tanzstudio’s 2018 season.
Jerusalem-born vocalist / composer / improviser Ayelet Rose Gottlieb creates from within the details of every-day life, shedding a musical spotlight on the golden moments hidden in the cracks of the mundane. Her distinct sound is rich and layered with influences from a variety of musical traditions, building on her Middle-Eastern and European lineage, as well as inspirations from avant-jazz, multidisciplinary arts, and new-music. Ayelet performs globally, sharing her music with audiences big and small. She has lived in twenty-four apartments, ten cities, five countries, four continents. Finally, she has made a home with her family in Montréal, Canada.
Dory Rebekah Sibley is Core Faculty at the Accademia dell’Arte in Arezzo, Italy where she teaches Voice and Ensemble Performance. She is Co-Founder of the NYC based physical theatre company Tut’Zanni. She is a founding member of the all-woman clown troupe Women From Mars and recently toured their ‘clown-noir’ cabaret SILENT REFLECTIONS through Italy and the USA. Dory is one of the pioneer teachers of Voice in the Mask work and collaborates with Torbjörn Alström, Head of Puppetry, Masks and Animation at the Frölunda Kulturhus in Gothenburg, Sweden. Dory is a certified teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework® and has over ten years of experience in various voice and bodywork including Roy Hart Experimental Voice, classical voice and opera theatre, Alexander and Feldenkrais techniques. She completed her teaching certification in the Elemental Body Alignment System (EBAS) in 2013. She was an ArezzoFestival organizer for over 4 years, was the CrisisART Festival Collective Facilitator from 2012 – 2014 and serves as a founding member of the Collaborative Arts Lab. She performs her original devised work in the USA and Europe.
I am a deviser, actor, director, writer and educator based in Portland, OR. The core of what I do is based in a passion for creating work that lives at the intersection of the personal and spiritual with a strong physical/visceral element. In 2011 I co-founded the physical theater company Push Leg, which produced several original works in Portland, OR to critical acclaim, including my one woman show, Mr. Darcy Dreamboat, which has also been performed at Pomona College, COHO Summerfest, Western Oregon University and San Juan Community Theater. I am a regular collaborator with the Liminal Performance Group with whom I co-created a site-specific dance theatre piece based on the work of Gertrude Stein. In London, I served as Associate Artistic Director of Mulberry Theatre Company for whom I directed the award winning world premiere, The Unravelling, recipient of the Scotsman’s Fringe First Award. Representative acting credits include: Tick Tack Type (Imago Theatre), Hard Times (COHO), and (I Am Still) The Duchess of Malfi (Artist Repertory Theater), A Wonderfully Flat Thing (East 14th St. Y, NY), Henry V (Island Stage Left). I have received several project grants from the Regional Arts and Culture Council as well as the Puffin Foundation.
I am an Australian illustrator and fine artist living in Brooklyn. I work for newspapers, magazines and designers and on occasion exhibit original work in galleries, or produce a fairly useful item.
With the second cohort, we expanded the group to include artists of other disciplines including painting, drawing, and voice. They are mothers of older children, multiple children, and adult children, united by the shared struggles of mothering and making. They posed questions about depression, impending death, and atypical development. They bravely dove into the darkness together to find the light in sharing.
This is the group that piloted the first residency with me. An international collective of performing artists- old classmates and collaborators whom I knew had also become mothers. Most of us new to motherhood, all of us performers and movers. For 9 months we gave each other an assignment every week.
Here are all the assignments from the first group. Feel free to give them a try on your own!
Lenka Clayton's Artist-Residency-in-Motherhood:
"I wondered how I might instead apply the framework of an artist residency to the wild new world that was unfolding at home, one that I usually felt entirely too tired to notice."
NYTimes article on how women's brains are rewired during pregnancy to "register and consider how other people perceive things," in other words, we're rewired to specialize in empathy, which is precisely the work of artists and theater practitioners since the beginning of time!
Howlround's Where are the Disappeared Women of the Theatre?:
"Perhaps mothers understand better than anyone the possibility of tiny creations evolving quickly into unstoppable forces, and that's what makes believing in their cause a thrill to investigate and support.”
Performance pieces made by women addressing questions of motherhood.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Staying an Artist While Having a Baby | “Artist Sarah Irvin provides a practical reproduction and childcare model for the studio aesthete”
In August 2015, I had the incredible experience of giving birth to a child. That transformation, and the resulting human have drastically changed my life and my work as an artist. Being an artist and a mother is a challenge. Our babysitters demand higher pay than we do. But my work continues to call and invigorate me. Must I struggle to work in spite of being a "full-time mother"? Do I put artistry on hold? I am a mother and choreographer. Both. I seek to make that a supportive and beneficial relationship rather than letting these roles compete for my attention.
I continue working in theater spaces and I often travel with my little companion. I danced my way through late pregnancy. Family and volunteers sat with my 4 month old backstage every night during my first show back on the boards. He's ridden on my back and roamed the floor in rehearsals, slept on a bouncy chair between the seats, and nursed while gazing suspiciously at his mother in sequined gold unitard, wig cap and rainbow eyelashes.
I am grateful every moment for the individuals and communities that have welcomed my choice to continue working, and to bring my child along. It would not be possible without their embrace. Without such allies, I would not be working.
About 9 months into motherhood, I started making instagram videos. It was a way to keep exploring artistically while spending lots and lots of time at home, totally at the service of my child's evolving needs. I explored the mundanities of this new life, the rhythm of a day of naptimes, and the necessity of empathy. This experiment was crucial in formatting the #mamaisamaker project.