Notes on Wild Space Dance Company’s ‘Flipside’

The day was warm and humid, but a lake breeze and the night shade behind the Milwaukee Art Museum’s Calatrava wing felt heavenly. MAM warrants substantially gratitude for giving totally free performances right here this summer months.

Every Thursday in August, Wild Area Dance Organization is undertaking Flipside, a 40-moment earth premiere painstakingly choreographed by Debra Loewen specifically for this website, done there by her troupe to live accompaniment.

The sight lines are great. You can perch on the low wall that outlines the participating in area or stretch out on the grass just over it. At the general performance I attended on the 2nd Thursday, some brought garden chairs, some had wheelchairs.

Each passer-by on the sidewalk alongside the lake grew to become component of the art celebration, regardless of whether going for walks, biking, roller skating or riding scooters. Crying gulls turned extra accompaniment. From my viewing spot, the lake, dotted with sailboats, and the Calatrava’s “prow” ended up backdrops. The lake was still ample to be a portray. The Calatrava’s windows were being huge image frames.

Alive and Consistently Transforming

Viewing Flipside was like substantially like viewing the artwork inside of. But Flipside is alive and frequently altering, renewing by itself, provoking further responses as it unfolds. The dance is summary, strongly structured, rhythmic, composed of solos and group passages, persuasive and meditative.

Loewen has produced dances inside of MAM in response to particular exhibitions. In a conversation after the performance, she described Helen Frankenthaler’s bold abstract paintings as a partial inspiration for this a single. MAM has four in the long term collection.

You’ll have your very own views as you watch. I’ll just say that even when relocating in unison, every single dancer is strongly individual. Each individual carries a stick of chalk and will make uncomplicated drawings on the stone-tiled dance ground. These could be a residence, or a body.  Blank paper performs a provocative purpose. Much more importantly, this dance is a gentle consideration of points we have faced given that Covid-19 struck. There is a lookup going on—looking, listening, sensing, around and inside—but you continue to have to act, to make conclusions and options. On one stage, it’s about art making—the get the job done at hand, in fact—but generally as a metaphor for other interactions.

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Many thanks to performers Katelyn Altmann, Tori Isaac, Jessica Lueck, Tisiphani Mayfield, Dan Schuchart, Andy Miller and Cory Coleman. As MAM’s Pedro Gutierrez claimed when I expressed my thanks to MAM for hosting is, “What greater use of a terrific area than Wild Room?”

The remaining absolutely free performances are Aug. 19 and 26 at 6 p.m. on the Milwaukee Artwork Museum East Lawn.

John Schneider

John Schneider is A&E editor and the Shepherd’s dance writer. He is a longtime artist-in-home and undertaking arts college member at Marquette University, and the founding director of the significantly-awarded Venture Non-Violence.

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Aug. 16, 2021

8:30 a.m.