Artist
Cindy Baker

Canada
www.cindy-baker.ca

Cindy Baker is a contemporary artist based in Western Canada whose work engages with queer, gender, race, disability, fat, and art discourses. Committed to ethical community engagement and critical social enquiry, Baker’s interdisciplinary research-based practice draws upon 25 years working, volunteering, and organizing in the communities of which she is part. She moves fluidly between the arts, humanities, and social sciences, emphasizing the theoretical and conceptual over material concerns. Baker holds an MFA from the University of Lethbridge where she received a SSHRC grant for her research in performance in the absence of the artist’s body; she has exhibited and performed across Canada and internationally. Helping found important community and advocacy organizations over the course of her career, Baker continues to maintain volunteer leadership roles across her communities.

Performance
Performance Academy 3: Good Bodies with Cindy Baker

FADO Performance Art Centre’s newest recurring series, Performance Academy, takes on the abstract form of a school, a university, a workshop, a class or a course, in the form of our own homemade academy. Performance: Academy is not a workshop and it’s not a school either. It’s best understood as a public engagement opportunity with an artist who is invested in inverting notions of authority in practice, research, and pedagogy.

Performance Academy 3: Good Bodies with Cindy Baker

What can your body do? What CAN’T your body do? The history of performance prioritizes movement that “pushes the limits” of our bodies and capabilities, creating points of tension between ease and difficulty. As artists with disabilities, our limits often seem like failings and if we can’t push as “far” as able-bodied people, we are seen as or feel like our work is less interesting; less advanced. We are also often inclined to make work that pushes our own limits in a way that is harmful to our well-being, using our work to prove our value and ability beyond our disabilities. Conversely, as able-bodied artists, we are usually blissfully unaware of the privilege of having a mechanically proficient body. We may want to make work that is sensitive to the notion of ability and limitations, or to proactively make work that acknowledges that our bodies will eventually begin to fail and that this does not mark an end to our practices.

How do we make work that respects the limits of our bodies and exploits and highlights our abilities and strengths, without making that work be “about” disability? How do we make work that talks about other ideas that we are interested in while remaining sensitive to our own abilities?

This will be a collaborative session in which we brainstorm ideas for new work and tease out ideas for fresh approaches to our practices. Baker will pose a series of questions and lead a discussion on the ideas generated. Attendees may be asked to participate in movement exercises based on their own ideas. Bring pens and paper or your preferred recording implements and any supportive or assistive props that you personally use and feel comfortable bringing.

This academy is open to all participants of all levels of study and/or experience, including the just plain curious. Admission is free. ASL interpretation and attendant care provided.

In partnership with Tangled Art + Disability, FADO welcomes Cindy Baker to Performance Academy for a one-time engagement, Good Bodies with Cindy Baker. This Performance Academy is presented in conjunction with the Tangled Art + Disability’s exhibition Home: Body, in which Cindy Baker presented a durational performance work entitled Crash Pad.

© Cindy Baker, Crash Pad, 2017. Photo Shannon Cochrane.

Series
Performance Academy

FADO Performance Art Centre newest recurring performance series takes on the abstract form of a school, a university, a workshop, a class or a course, in the form of our own homemade academy. 

Performance Academy is a platform in which artists constitute their own school of learning—performing pedagogy—for an audience in the form of peer-to-peer academia, where self-organizing and personal experience as knowledge is valued over institutionalized frameworks. Artists, writers and creative thinkers from the performance art milieu as well as adjacent practices such as curation, social practice, film/video and more, develop and offer mini-courses (of three or more sessions disseminated over several weeks) presenting ideas and covering a range of topics and  that each facilitator is already an expert in (however one might define “expert”).

Performance Academy is not a workshop and it’s not a school either. It’s best understood as a public engagement opportunity with an artist who is invested in inverting notions of authority in practice, research, and pedagogy. Through a sustained commitment to collective learning, Performance Academy transforms the concept of a course into a group performance. A workshop in the form of a performance; a performance in the form of a school.

Performance Academy 1
Inconsolable Solvency with Bethany Ides
September 10, 17 & 24, 2017

Performance Academy 2
Performing the Critique with Dino Dinco
October 11, 18 & 25, 2017

Performance Academy 3
Good Bodies with Cindy Baker
December 16, 2017

Series Purple

An ode to FADO's history, Series Purple is composed of a collection of purple fragrance materials dating back to the Roman Empire. Dense, intense, and meandering, this fragrance tells us non-linear stories.

Top Notes

huckleberry, violet

Middle Notes

cassis, lilac, heliotrope

Base Notes

orris root, purple sage, labdanum