Imagining Digital | Deeper Duet: jaamil olawale kosoko + Daniel Alexander Jones
Jan 18, 2023, 6:00 pm EST
$15 – $20
Deeper Duet: jaamil olawale kosoko + Daniel Alexander Jones
Early Bird price through December 16-January 15: $15
General Price: $20
Two multi-hyphenate artists share excerpts from their new book projects—Daniel Alexander Jones’ Love as Light and jaamil olawale kosoko’s Black Body Amnesia–discussing the process for creating as a source of healing self and community. Their “duet” conversation will also address themes of friendship, grace, and loving as a gesture of self-sovereignty.
About jaamil olawale kosoko
jaamil olawale kosoko is a multi-spirited Nigerian American author, performance artist, and curator of Yoruba and Natchez descent originally from Detroit, MI. jaamil’s practice is conceptual and process based, fluidly moving within the creative realms of live art performance, video, sculpture, and poetry. Through rooted ritual and spiritual practice, embodied poetics, Black critical studies, and queer theories of the body, kosoko conjures and crafts perpetual modes of freedom, healing, and care when/where/however possible.
jaamil is the recipient of awards including the 2022 Slamdance Jury Prize for Best Experimental Short film, 2021/22 MacDowell Fellowship, 2020 Pew Fellowship in the Arts, 2020 NCCAkron Creative Administrative Fellowship, 2019 NPN Creation & Development Fund award, 2019 Red Bull Arts Fellowship, 2019 NYSCA/NYFA Artist Fellowship in Choreography, 2017-2019 Princeton Arts Fellowship, 2018 NEFA National Dance Project Award, 2018-20 New York Live Arts Live Feed Residency, 2017 Cave Canem Poetry Fellowship, and consecutive 2016-2020 USArtists International Awards from the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation.
Blending poetry and memoir, conversation and performance theory, their book Black Body Amnesia: Poems and Other Speech Acts, was released Spring 2022. Black Body Amnesia: LIVE, the performance reading, is a live theatrical event that examines the shapeshifting, illegible, and fugitive realities of Black diasporan people negotiating the psychic lifeworlds of living inside the American context. It is performed with an alternating ensemble of performers including jaamil olawale kosoko, Raymond Pinto, mayfield brooks, DJ Maij, and features original sound compositions by Everett-Asis Saunders. In this new work, kosoko uses complexity theory—which they define as the study of adaptive survivalist strategies inside complex networks or environments—as a performance device. From this artistic vantage point, the artist explores how minoritarianized communities record and affirm their existence through collaborative actions and protests, and how they then archive these personal freedom narratives to subvert culturally charged fields of systemic oppression, loss, and erasure.
About Daniel Alexander Jones
Daniel Alexander Jones exemplifies the artist-as-energy worker. His wildflower body of original work includes plays, performance pieces, recorded music, concerts, music theater events, essays, and long-form improvisations. He explores the esoteric and the everyday through his own distinctive dramaturgy.
Jones’s critically-acclaimed pieces include Radiate (Soho Rep and National Tour; Black Light (Public Theater, Greenwich House Theatre, American Repertory Theatre, Penumbra Theatre); Duat (Soho Rep); An Integrator’s Manual (La MaMa, etc. and Fusebox Festival). Jones has recorded six albums of original songs as his alter-ego, Jomama Jones. Daniel’s current project, www.aten.life, significantly expands his digital media presence. He has been a part of arts communities in New York City, Minneapolis/St. Paul, Austin, Boston, and Los Angeles, where he bases his practice.
Jones directed world-premieres of new plays and performance pieces by E. Patrick Johnson, Erik Ehn, Renita Martin, and Shay Youngblood, among others. He is a company member of Penumbra Theatre Company in St. Paul; an associate company member of Pillsbury House Theatre in Minneapolis; an alumnus of New Dramatists, and was a company member of Frontera@Hyde Park Theatre in Austin.
Jones was honored with the PEN America Laura Pels Foundation Theater Award in 2021. Daniel is a TED Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow, and the recipient of the Helen Merrill Playwriting Award, a Doris Duke Artist Award, an Alpert Award in the Arts, a USA Artist Fellowship, an Arts Matters grant, an inaugural Creative Capital Grant, a McKnight National Residency and Commission, a Howard Foundation Fellowship, a NEA/TCG Playwriting Residency, a Jerome Fellowship, and a Many Voices Playwriting Fellowship. Jones was the lead artist on five projects awarded support by the MAP Fund and is a NEFA National Theater Project grantee. Daniel has been a Mellon Creative Research Fellow at the University of Washington, a Hume Fellow at Occidental College, a Fellow at the Hemispheric Institute at NYU, and has been in residence at a number of colleges and universities across the country including CalArts and UCLA’s Center for New Performance. Jones received a Bistro Award for Outstanding Performance Artistry for Jomama Jones, and a Franky Award from the Prelude Festival in recognition of long-term, extraordinary impact on contemporary theater and performance.
Daniel Alexander Jones completed his undergraduate study at Vassar College in Africana Studies with a focus on literature and the arts under the guidance of Dr. Constance E. Berkley, and his graduate study at Brown University in Theater where he worked with Rites and Reason Theatre and was mentored by Aishah Rahman. He is a widely respected, innovative educator who has taught across the United States and held faculty positions at Goddard College, The University of Texas at Austin, and most recently at Fordham University, where he was a Full Professor in the Department of Theatre and Visual Arts. He is a frequent essayist, with contributions published by Theater magazine and HowlRound. The Herb Alpert Foundation noted that Daniel Alexander Jones “creates multi-dimensional experiences where bodies, minds, emotions, voices, and spirits conjoin, shimmer, and heal.”
We encourage you to join this digital event in real time to participate in discussion and artist Q&As! However, if you are unable to join us at the time of the event, the full recording will be made available to all attendees 48 hours after the live event. Patrons will have access to that recording for 10 days via Gibney’s Vimeo account.
Each Deeper Duet session, curated by Eva Yaa Asantewaa, engages two special guests in a lively and provocative conversation about artistic life, artistic practice, and the urgent social concerns that drive creative expression.
Photos courtesy of the artists.