Since 2015, Art Stations Foundation has been awarding an annual research scholarship which is an expression of its belief in the necessity of in-depth research in the field of contemporary choreography as an essential condition for its development. At the same time, the scholarship forms part of the Foundation’s long-term work to promote and cultivate choreography and to widely disseminate both choreography and knowledge about its latest phenomena. In connection with the transformation of the Foundation’s activities following the closure of the Old Brewery New Dance programme, the scholarships in 2021 also feature a programme dedicated to supporting artists in producing individual projects. Both scholarship programmes are guided by the intention to promote projects by artists and researchers who, like the Sponsor, are ready to take creative risks and forge new pathways in the context of the current reality. They support those who seek (and formulate) their own innovative strategies, solutions and methods in the field of both theoretical reflection and choreographic practice. Hence the focus of the programmes is on experimental forms which are a reference to the philosophy and practice of expanded choreography.
By the decision of the Scholarship Committee of 3 March 2021, the beneficiary of the annual research scholarship is Maria Stokłosa with her project
What I Do when I Dance? Action is Primary, 3:15 Dances, Departing from Action: documentation, practice and audience perspective.
The project will reflect on different conceptual orders where experimental choreography seeks answers to what triggers, problematises and describes the practice of improvisation, which Maria has been developing for many years. What does this practice say about the political potential of choreography? What happens when Maria guides others in their dance, when she performs to and with an audience? The research project will be realised at the Department of Cultural Studies of the Institute of Polish Culture at the University of Warsaw. In addition to an extensive study of materials and critical reflection, the project will also include online publications of selected archives in the form of texts, and excerpts from interviews and performances. During the project, Maria will conduct a series of open classes combining practice and theory.
The aim of the research is to describe the choreographic processes in which I have participated, as well as my project, which has been performed 50 times in completely different forms and venues: in galleries, theatres, community centres and in the open air. The basis for the description is documentation which will make it possible, in retrospect, to ask what knowledge this artistic practice has produced, also from a perspective that treats practice as theory. By describing and problematising my projects, I intend to reflect on the different conceptual orders that provide settings for experimental choreography. What does the practice of the improvisation I have developed trigger, problematise or describe? What does it say about the political potential of choreography? What happens when I dance, when I guide others in their dance, when I perform my dance to and with an audience?
The research project will be conducted at the Department of Cultural Studies of the Institute of Polish Culture at the University of Warsaw. In addition to an extensive study of materials and critical reflection, the project will also include online publications of selected archives in the form of texts, and excerpts from interviews and performances. During the project, I will also conduct a series of open classes combining practice and theory.
Maria Stokłosa is a choreographer and dancer, president of Burdąg Foundation. Her focus is on experimental dance, working with, among others, the Warsaw-based Centre in Motion (Centrum w Ruchu). In her work, she combines choreography with her long practice of dance improvisation.
Maria is the author of the solo performance Departing from Action, which has been presented 50 times (in Zachęta – National Gallery of Art, Centre for Contemporary Art, Austriackie Forum Kultury, independent community centres, existing stage sets from performances in TR Warszawa and Nowy Teatr, and many others). Her other works include Queen of Water (premiered during the exhibition Other Dances at U-jazdowski Centre, Warsaw, 2018); Golden Demons (premiered in MCK Nowy Teatr, Warsaw, 2016), and Ecdysis (premiered in the Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, 2014), as well as Intercontinental (2013), MaMa Perform (2012), The Right Hemisphere (2009), and Vacuum (2007). As a choreographer and performer, she has worked with director Wojtek Ziemilski (A Show for Tourists and Come Together). She regularly works with choreographers Meg Foley and Peter Pleyer. Moreover, she has performed in shows by Jeremy Wade and Maija Reeta Raumanni, as well as in Tuning Scores by Lisa Nelson and Tribes by Sara Shelton Mann, among others. Furthermore, Maria created the stage movement for Paweł Mykietyn’s opera The Magic Mountain. Maria is a graduate of the School for New Dance Development in Amsterdam and the London Contemporary Dance School. She is currently working on her master’s degree at the Department of Cultural Studies of the Institute of Polish Culture at the University of Warsaw.