[ISEA2018] Artists Talk: Nancy Lee & Emmalena Fredriksson — Tidal Traces


Art, Science & Us sub-programme

Tidal Traces is a 360-video VR dance piece that places viewers in the centre of the performance. In it, three characters explore a new and uncertain world—moving between tranquility and ominousness, beauty and peril. Entangled in this tension, the viewer becomes the fourth character, directly composing the dance through their gaze. Captured offshore on intertidal mudflats near Vancouver, Tidal Traces is a collaboration between new-media artist Nancy Lee and choreographer Emmalena Fredriksson. The two merged their practices through a year-long artist residency to explore the opportunities VR offers for viewing and experiencing dance. In a traditional stage presentation, the conventional separation between audience and performers places constraints on the intimacy of the experience. Dance films allow for a closer, visually more dynamic experience of movement—as well as possibilities of breaking continuity, time and space—but there is still a divide between viewer and performer, and the performance happens in a different time and space than the viewing itself. So it can lack the physical empathy and immersion of senses that comes with watching live dance. With Tidal Traces, Nancy and Emmalena aim to surpass these limitations and blend the best of live performance and dance film, placing the viewer viscerally in the middle of a real-time experience in a way that has not been possible previously.  mediaspace.nfb.ca/epk/tidal-traces/

  • Nancy Lee is an interdisciplinary media artist, filmmaker, and cultural producer based in Vancouver, Canada. The notion of staging is a constant in Nancy’s work and underpins her projects from a more traditional filmmaker into the realms of VR and new media performance and installation. Nancy has performed and presented her work in festivals and conferences around North America, Asia, Europe and Australia. Last summer, Nancy co-produced CURRENT: Feminist Electronic Art Symposium, a multidisciplinary and intersectional music and electronic art symposium working with women and non-binary artists. She is a 2018 YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee for Art, Cultural & Design and is named one of BC’s Most Influential Women in STEM.
  • Emmalena Fredriksson is a dance artist based in Vancouver, Canada since 2013. Born in Sweden, she received her training at Balettakademien in Umeå and at SEAD (Salzburg Experimental Academy of Dance) in Austria. Emmalena holds an MFA degree from Simon Fraser University and has presented choreographic work, performed and taught internationally with Daghdha Dance Company (IE), Canaldanse (FR), Pact Zollverein (DE), and Falmouth University (UK) among others.

Supported by the National Film Board of Canada and the Canada Council for the Arts