What is it?
My InBodyNature Practice continues to develop but the basis of this practice comes from my study with Anna Halprin in 1989, followed by a ten-month apprenticeship in 2009 with Jamie McHugh in Sea Ranch, California. With Anna and Jamie, I learned how to tap into an endless creative stream between mediums, and between my self and nature, to excavate meaning, understanding, and a sense of belonging.
(Go here for examples of explorations in Sea Ranch)
An elemental part of InBodyNature Practice is scoring, something I first learned at the Tamalpa Institute, which is used by improvisation dancers and musicians as a way to create a structure. In simplest terms, it is a list of activities to be done in a chosen place and time.
My scores almost always include the following: an element from Nature, a Body part, a movement exploration, a way of making contact, a vocal exploration, and a focus for stillness. These elements taken together focus one’s attention on being in relationship with one’s Body in relation to Nature.
InBodyNature scores are a way to develop one’s capacity for simultaneous awareness of one’s inner and outer landscape. This originates with Jamie McHugh and his idea of the Five Pre-Verbal Languages of the Body: movement, touch, sound, stillness and breath. (I combine sound and breath.)
Because this practice does not include language, it encourages the development of one’s inner vision and intuition, and opens the possibility for engagement through the senses.
InBodyNature practice, and the relationship between my own body, elementals and place, is what informs my art—directly and indirectly.
For the most part, this has been a private practice. I have explored teaching it to several small groups. Some of my hopes for this practice in the future include:
- traveling to my ancestral homelands and see what comes forward in those places;
- using the InbodyNature scores as a way to dialogue between different artists with the objective of creating a group performance/installation/show; and
- inquiring with other creative queer creatures into how our relationship with our queerness, bodies, and identities are informed, inspired, and transformed by our connection and communion with nature.