Donald G. Drapkin Studio
Featuring works by:
Jessica Chambers, Anna Kimmel, and Helen Lin
SATURATE by Jessica Chambers, Anna Kimmel, and Helen Lin
In shrouding the human form with metallic paint, effectively creating a barrier between the lens of the camera and the body, we expose the separation amongst individuals in today’s technology saturated society.
Concept and movement by Jessica Chambers ’18, Anna Kimmel ’18 (both dance certificate students), Filming and editing by Helen Lin ’18 (vis art student)
Somi Jun (text), Eli Berman (music), and Helen Lin (animation)
Conducted by Gloria Yin and performed by Eli Berman, Andrew Damien, Maddy Kushan, Danny Pinto, Alison Spann, Rosamond Van Wingerden, and Calvin Wentling.
O’Keeffe Colony is a collaboration between Eli Berman, Somi Jun, and Helen Lin. Berman arranged the composition so that waves of percussion, vocals, and electric guitar wash over the room from behind, while the cyclical nature of Lin’s animation creates an ambient inclusion, a blurred space where performer and audience partake in the same experience.
O’Keeffe Colony experiments with gendered sound by assigning traditionally ‘male’ and ‘female’ vocal parts to singers who do not necessarily align with these roles. Berman aimed to create an androgynous sound with this composition, exploring the idea of sonic resistance to the gender binary through experimentation with classical and highly gendered mediums.
Berman’s iteration of Jun’s poetry distorts the wording, so that the poetry is often unintelligible. This unintelligibility resists the perception of vocal music as primarily a vehicle for text, narrative, and imagery, showing that there is something sublime about the purely sonic dimension of language. In O’Keeffe Colony, sounds from a collective nostalgia stand on their own.
Lin’s looping animation transforms the piece into a shared experience between performer and audience, challenging the separation of artist and consumer. The musicians stand behind the audience, instead of in front of them, so that O’Keeffe Colony becomes less of a performance and more of a shared space. The animation brings images from the otherwise unintelligible text to a semi-conscious level, creating an immersive and almost hypnotic ambiance through the repeated images of melting ice, drips, and pooling water.
Eli Berman is a second-year undergraduate student studying music composition and vocal performance. A 2017 & 2016 National YoungArts Foundation Winner in Music and a 2016 ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composer’s Award Finalist, Berman has written and been commissioned for a variety of pieces for concert, film, theater, and multimedia, including an installation piece for the Pittsburgh Biennial at Carnegie Mellon University and the soundtracks to the TV series Gone and the short film Flesh and Iron. Berman has been mentored by composers such as Ken Ueno, Eve Beglarian, Matthew Rosenblum, and Keith Fitch at multiple festivals, including New Music On the Point, the Atlantic Music Festival, the Cleveland Institute of Music’s Young Composers Program, and California Summer Music, in addition to being a resident composer with the queer youth performing arts troupe Dreams of Hope in 2015. At Princeton, Berman has studied composition with Dmitri Tymoczko and Viet Cuong, and they sing bass-baritone & countertenor with the Princeton University Glee Club, Princeton University Chamber Choir, and Contrapunctus XIV.
Somi Jun is a second-year undergraduate and prospective Comparative Literature student. She is the founder of Tunnel Magazine, an international student arts publication, and gave a TEDxTalk on the dangers of nationalism. She is considering a fuller-time commitment to poetry.
Helen Lin I was born and raised in New York City and am currently majoring in Art and Archaeology Program 2: Studio Arts. I am interested in combining drawing, painting, book-binding, film, animation, photography, and/or sculpture to create multi-media narratives that observe how people connect to one another. Through my work, I tend to explore distinctions between real and unreal based on sentimentality. I am fascinated by dysfunctional relationships, guilt, and human curiosity for the natural world. I am a heavy dreamer. I dream every time I nap or go to bed. Sometimes, you can catch me running around in a bee costume handing out compliments or self-published zines. At the age of 19, I fell in love with a PVC pipe and my life has changed ever since.
Yasmine Eichbaum, “When Art Comes to Life”
Yasmine Eichbaum is a junior (’19) in the Lewis Arts Center Dance Department. During her time at Princeton, she has performed in two dance festivals, working with guest choreographers such as Zvi Gotheiner, Jimena Paz, and David Neumann, and several senior theses. In her sophomore year, she participated in the Princeton Performance Lab with her piece “I am so happy I could cry”, a duet exploring the point at which one experiences contradictory emotions at the same time. During this piece, she found that using film and playing with the dancers’ facial expressions added another layer to the duet and allowed the audience to follow a specific narrative of the piece. In this way, Yasmine is interested in integrating different art medias into her piece to manipulate the audience’s focus.
William Keiser, “The Mirage”
This film, The Mirage, is a twenty-minute journey through the desert in dance. It involves two characters, Rachel and Alexi, who inhabit an American Dream – in the sense that this is what would happen if America dreamed of itself. It was filmed in White Sands National Monument, an expanse of white gypsum dunes that is ninety miles from the Trinity Site, the location of the test detonation of the first atomic bomb.
The action is divided into three sections: Past, Present, and Future. In Past, a scrambled, displaced evocation of history, both personal and collective, plays out on the sand (of time). As in a real dream, events seamlessly become other events, confusing a sense of narrative. In Present, the individual dreams become more concrete, even as certain elements seem to belong to the past or the future. Rachel walks into her own individual dream, but is perhaps aware of the unreality of it. The personal becomes political, and the political becomes personal. Future ejects us from the interwoven elements of past and present into a meditative, bittersweet space.
I’m a twenty-one year old dancer and choreographer from Pompano Beach, Florida. I was classically trained in ballet for ten years and danced briefly with the Professional Division at Pacific Northwest Ballet. I’m currently studying German at Princeton and getting a certificate in Dance. In my free time I enjoy writing and being with my family.
Saturday, October 7 1:00 pm — 2:00 pm
Donald G. Drapkin Studio @ Lewis Arts complex