From Lincoln Center to the dairy farm, the opera house to the frozen pond, Ann Carlson's work defies description and category while expanding the context of choreography and performance. Borrowing from the disciplines of choreography, performance, theater, public and conceptual art. Carlson's work is project based and often organized within a series format. Carlson has received over thirty commissions and numerous awards for her artistic work, including a 2009 USA Artists Fellowship, a 2008 American Masterpiece award, 2005/2006 Fellowship at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Studies, Harvard University, a 2003 Guggenheim Fellowship in choreography, a 2003 New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, and three awards from the National Choreographic Initiative in 2001, 2003 and 2005, She was awarded a Doris Duke Award for New Work in 2000, a fellowship from the Foundation for Contemporary Performance in l999, a 1995 CalArts/Alpert Award, and she is the recipient of a prestigious three-year choreographic fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, as well as seven years of consecutive support. Carlson 's work has been performed and exhibited at a multitude of cultural institutions both nationally and internationally.
Carlson's visit is co-sponsored by the Department of Drama.
The Baby Play: Neurological Development and the Perception of Motion, Color, and Gesture in the Very Young (ages 0 – 3)
I have been invited to make a movement based theatrical work for the very young. This trend (live theater/performance designed for spectator/participants 0 – 3 years old) has been alive in Italy and Sweden for the past 15 years. Children’s Theater Company in Minneapolis, MN has received generous support from the Bush Foundation to begin commissioning artists from a number of disciplines through-out the U.S. to make this kind of work available to American infants and children.
While at Stanford’s Humanities Center, I hope to consult with experts in the fields of neurological development, early childhood perception, understanding more deeply perception of symbols, color, gesture in infancy and early childhood. I also hope to gain understanding of the development of the visual field, the impression and perception of metaphor in early childhood, and also explore how the understanding of simple story develops. Also, I have a number of questions in developing this work that I hope to answer during the fellowship: What is the impact of live performance on this age group? Is “live” performance perceived differently than life, at this age? How is light and dark experienced in the theatrical environment by the very young? What are the emotional impacts of observed movement for a young child? For example, is quickness frightening or exhilarating? Does slow motion confuse or reassure? How is abstract gesture perceived?
Finally, I hope to do some research on the impact of gesture, specifically the hand in performance (in the context of this work).