ISSUE Project Room: Elysia Crampton Chuquimia / Embaci + Dasychira
Event by ISSUE Project Room.
Thursday, January 28th, ISSUE opens the 2021 Season in partnership with Abrons Arts Center with the presentation of a new video work by Elysia Crampton Chuquimia, as well as the premiere of Seasons in a Quasar, a new collaborative work by Brooklyn-based vocalist and producer Embaci and South African via NYC artist Dasychira.
Elysia Crampton Chuquimia has worked with her brother Joshua Chuquimia Crampton on a video work featuring landscape renderings with Aimara qullqa as animated icons, set to her piece “Secret Ravine (Chakana En General).” This piece is the opening of her new album “OCORARA 2010,” released on the PAN label in May 2020, which follows intergenerational trauma, fugitives of Christian violence in a twilight called Puruma, returning to Mama Cocha, the sea that theorists call Nowhere. The album was dedicated to her friend Paul Sousa, who while incarcerated, worked years as an inmate firefighter across the Sierra Nevada of California, as well as the work of Sage LaPena and Dr. Gretel Mendizabal Nolte.
Working together remotely from across the Atlantic in different time zones, Embaci and Dasychira have taken their creative collaboration to a digital sphere that exists in a state of “kairos” rather than in the common chronological state of time known as ‘“chronos.” In kairos, the pair have been able to generate a reality where their perception of time is tied more to celestial events and “eras.” Between their satellite stations of New York City and Amsterdam, astrological phenomena such as solstices, equinoxes, meteor showers, and comet flybys are connections felt more tangibly than the daily cycles of waking and sleeping. Chronological time is something constructed by people, yet it differs across geographical locations. It depends on geopolitics as opposed to the nature of being. It is something decided and definitive. However, in 2020, the artists saw that creating plans on their own time doesn’t always work out the way we thought, and that nature will always operate on its own clock seamlessly. Embracing a more universal notion of togetherness in kairos, the two have built their own solar system of possibility—where randomness, one of the core substances of human expression, guides them forward into exciting new nebulas.
Seasons in a Quasar is a dynamic online video show inspired by the exploration of the galaxies inside ourselves that connect us, galaxies as complex and endless as the cosmos above us. With references ranging from classic children’s stories to Trinidadian folklore, the two artists use storytelling, role playing, sonic tone poems, sound design, improvisational scenes, and a surprise cast of live guests to create a magical heliocentric system of their own. SIAQ is more about being in a state of flux and fluidity while orbiting through spacetime than setting direct coordinates for the destination. The pilot of the journey is instinct and intuition, impulse and feeling, imagination and catharsis. The destination lies in the connective tissue of embracing supernal chaos rather than fighting it.
Using the video-conferencing platform Zoom, Embaci and Dasychira will connect with an ensemble of musicians, performance artists and participants that alter the musical trajectory of the performance. Embarking from the familiar “choose your own adventure” style gamebook, a narrator will steer the direction of the mood, development, and experience of the piece. By incorporating elements of randomness, Seasons in a Quasar presents a unique and experimental theatrical format for the artists. Dasychira and Embaci’s long-standing collaborative history expands into an intimate show filled with their collaborative pieces and new compositions only debuting at this performance with ISSUE Project Room and Abrons Arts Center.
Over the last few years, Embaci has collaborated with artists like Elysia Crampton, Klein, Chino Amobi, and Angel-Ho. In 2016, Embaci self-released NON VS. N.A.A.F.I., a digital tape which lays her vocals over NON and N.A.A.F.I. artist’s tracks. Dasychira has released a series of acclaimed EPs, Immolated and Haptics, and most recently their debut album xDream on Blueberry Records. Both artists share an extensive collaborative history, often appearing in each other’s works. Seasons in a Quasar is a one time only perfo