MAITA HAGAD: ON THE LIMINAL STATE OF FLOATING IN-BETWEENBY MARIE ALBERTO
TELL ME ABOUT YOURSELF, YOUR PRACTICE AND YOUR APPROACH TO YOUR FIELD.
Growing up surrounded by artists, I have always found myself expressing my inner thoughts in a myriad of ways. Fascinated by fashion, built environments (interior and architecture), and dance, I spend most of my time materializing and intertwining these different yet interrelated disciplines into forms of visual and spatial experiences.
HOW DID YOU COPE WITH THE ABSENCE OF PHYSICAL CONNECTION WITHIN YOUR MOVEMENT PEERS DURING THE PANDEMIC? WHY HAS IT AFFECTED YOUR CREATIVE PROCESS, YOUR STATE OF MIND AND BODY AWARENESS?
Dance, at its core, is a sensory result and is tuned to the precise sensory reactions of a dancer or choreographer. It is a combination of kinesthetic, visual, tactile, and auditory sensations.
When we look at our somatosensory system, there are two touch systems – one that dictates the location, movement, and strength of a touch. The other is the emotional touch system. With the absence of physical connection, the emotional aspect is affected.
Naturally, if one sense is lost, our brain is rewired to process the other senses. Just as the brain has this unique characteristic of plasticity, we have the ability to adapt and respond to changes in our environment. For me, this was through integrating dance/ movement into different mediums.
HOW DID YOU EMBRACE THE ADVANTAGES AND CONSTRAINTS OF TECHNOLOGY IN YOUR MOVEMENT PRACTICE?
At the moment, I have more questions than answers. Combining technology and dance is relatively new to me. Before the COVID-19 pandemic, digital dance classes were rarely incorporated into our everyday training. This reminds me of an old practice in sculpture that asks: “How do we breathe life into inanimate things?”
WHAT YOUR TOP THREE ADVICES FOR PRODUCTIVITY AND EFFICIENCY AT HOME?
(1) Give value to your ability to create while being sensitive to where you are and what is happening around you.
(2) Realize that your movement is your own.
(3) Dance is not defined by one style, technique or idea. It is something that is meant to be explored, questioned, and immersed in.