La Pocha Nostra
February 1-14, 2018
While La Pocha Nostra is in residence at 18th Street Arts Center, they will be offering a five-day workshop that is an immersive experience in performance art with a focus on the human body as a site for creation, reinvention, memory and activism. La Pocha Nostra is a trans-disciplinary arts organization that provides a support network and forum for artists of various disciplines, generations and ethnic backgrounds. La Pocha is devoted to erasing the borders between art and politics, art practice and theory, artist and spectator. La Pocha Nostra has intensely focused on the notion of collaboration across national borders, race, gender and generations as an act of radical citizen diplomacy and as a means to create temporary communities of rebel artists. Every year, La Pocha conducts a summer and a winter performance art school in which Pocha’s radical pedagogy (a performance methodology that has been developed during the last 10 years) is shared with an international group of rebel artists.
The ‘Pocha workshop’ is internationally recognized as a rigorous artistic and anthropological experiment in which carefully selected artists from several countries and every imaginable artistic, ethnic, multi-cultural, and gender persuasion begin to negotiate common ground. Performance becomes the connective tissue and lingua franca for this temporary community of rebel artists.
The pedagogical approach will offer two parallel processes: Participants are exposed to La Pocha Nostra’s most recent performance methodologies, an eclectic combination of exercises borrowed from multiple traditions including performance art, experimental theater and dance, the Suzuki method, ritual shamanism, performance games and live jam sessions. Parallel to this hands-on process, the group will analyze the creative process, the issues addressed by the work, its aesthetic currency, cultural impact and political pertinence.