A Conversation with Eiko Otake moderated by John Killacky
An artist's talk with Dancer/ Performer Eiko Otake, moderated by John Killacky, at The Flynn Center for the Performing Arts in Burlington, Vermont. The conversation was recorded on May 23, 2016 in Amy E. Tarrant gallery where A Body in Fukushima was on exhibit.
A Body in Fukushima, a series of photographs, is the collaborative work between Eiko and Japanese historian and photographer William Johnston. In 2014, Eiko and Johnston made two extended visits to the irradiated areas surrounding the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear reactors, where all residents had been evacuated. Prior to this artistic collaboration, Otake and Johnston co-taught courses at Wesleyan University on atomic bombings and mountaintop removal mining.
Eiko first conceived of the photo project as a part of her first solo performance project, A Body in Places. Central to the project is a drive to explore non-traditional venues and to respond to the innate characteristics of each specific place. As part of this series, she was commissioned by The Flynn to create a dance-performance at The Moran Plant during a week long residency in Vermont, which coincided with the exhibit at Amy E. Tarrant Gallery.
John Killacky, Executive Director of The Flynn and former dancer, has known Eiko Otake for many decades, and moderated an intimate and nuanced conversation. For over forty years, Eiko performed together with Komo "creating a unique and riveting theater of movement out of stillness, shape, light and sound". Deeply respected in the dance community and highly regarded around the world (MacArthur Foundation Fellowship Award), A Body in Places is her first solo project.