Awe and Wonder
February 15-16, 2019
Transit Dances III
June 8, 2019
Saturday November 3 2018 at the 50th Anniversary LASER/ISAST Convening, San Francisco
in collaboration with visual artist MEREDITH TROMBLE and geobiologist DAWN SUMNER, presents The Vortex. The evening-length work is a kaleidoscope of dance, spoken work and video about diversity and discovery. Interacting with a dynamic vortex of projected drawings, based on true stories from scientists who are women, people of color or gender nonconforming, the dancers bring to life the emotional impact of moments when an honored Dartmouth graduate finds that no research university will hire a black scientist; an astronomer is groped by her advisor; or a geologist hides his drag persona. These and other stories limn the conflict between social stereotypes and the ideal of an objective world of knowledge. The lure of discovery and the thrill of scientists’ breakthroughs are illustrated as the emotionally charged stories are translated into movement and visuals full of compressed meanings. The performance is followed by an invitation to the audience to join the artists in discussion of the performance and its content, the fruit of a multi-year project that began when collaborators Sternberg, Tromble and Sumner met at the first art/science session at the Djerassi Resident Artist Program in July 2014.