Performing Arts

Norah ZShaw

Livable Futures Virtual Residency

Norah ZShaw standing next to another person with dark hair.
A year-long series of digital performances, talks, and traces

Dance innovator and intermedia artist Norah Zuniga Shaw (ZShaw) takes on planetary conditions of uncertainty and loss in a series of digital performance experiments that build on her previous projects Climate Gathering, an immersive ritual of radical presence, feeling, and intention, and the Livable Futures podcast and pop-up events.

Commissioned by the Wexner Center, the residency will unfold in conjunction with the United Nations Climate Change Conference in November 2021 and continue with public events in 2022. Accumulating its traces on this site, the center’s social media feeds, and elsewhere, the project will feature several key collaborators of ZShaw’s including Byron Au Yong, André M. Zachery, Charles Vincent Burwell, LROD, and Michael J. Morris.

A choreographer, vocalist, writer, and professor at Ohio State, Norah ZShaw is a paradigm-shifting artist known for her innovations using digital technology to visualize and extend the realm of performance. In an alchemy of bodies, ecologies, sounds, and interactive media, her work conjures worlds that are profoundly inclusive, emergent, and alive.

"This project comes out of a pivotal period in 2015” ZShaw notes, "during which I began confronting my fear and rage around climate change and social injustice by using what I know as a maker—interweaving improvisation, multimedia performance, and intersectional community building to bring a sense of poetics to the discussion—an embodied way to engage the magnitude of the issues. Resisting overwhelming narratives of disaster, this series holds space for breakdown and breakthrough, hospice and healing, human and more-than-human."

Photo: Seth Moses Miller

This series was commissioned by the Wexner Center for the Arts and supported by Barnard’s Movement Lab, the Sonic Arts Ensemble directed by Marc Ainger, the Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design, and grants from Ohio State’s Global Arts and Humanities Discovery Theme and the Greater Columbus Arts Council.

Ohio Arts Council