Joan’s composition “Oulipo” from Your Body is Not a Shark

by Joan Jeanrenaud
Released 2014
Deconet Records
Tune for 2 cellos

“‘Oulipo’ is a two cello version of a piece I originally wrote for the multi-media production ‘Your Body is Not a Shark’, a collaboration with choreographer Cid Pearlman and poet Denise Leto. The evening long piece premiered in January 2013, the music being scored for solo cello (me), four violins, two violas, two cellos, one bass and percussion (William Winant). One of Denise’s poems was titled ‘Oulipo’ which took its name from the group “Ouvroir de litterature potentielle”, a gathering of writers and mathematicians who seek to create new works using constrained writing techniques. Constraints are used as a means of triggering ideas and inspiration.”


Society for Dance Scholars Writing/Dancing Dancing/Writing Conference

Your Body is Not a Shark: Discourses of Somatic and Poetic Engagement on the Page and the Stage
A conversation about this interdisciplinary performance piece with
Denise Leto and Cid Pearlman
Presenting at the University of Iowa
November 15, 2014

main conf image 1 -medium

Photo credit: “Americana: the Routes of our Roots,” choreography by Becky Chun, Thesis I, 2012. Photography by Michelle Smith of Greensmith Photography.

The Society of Dance History Scholars and the Congress on Research in Dance are excited to announce a joint conference at the University of Iowa, home of the renowned Writers’ Workshop in Iowa City, Iowa, a UNESCO-designated City of Literature. The 2014 location will provide an impetus to explore the interplay between dancing and writing, globally, historically, and within contemporary culture. The site of the Event provides opportunity to examine issues of authorship, representation, and narrative in dancing and writing practices across social and cultural contexts. Bringing writing and dancing into dialog allows us to once again assess their relationship in consideration of medium, form, methodology, aesthetics, authorship, tradition, temporality, duration, meaning, and communication.

Lines: marybones by Pattie McCarthy

Mary is arrested mary is released from prison
one of the afflicted girls possibly mary possibly
mercy the specter of mary mary becomes
ill & mary is blamed mary is
arrested again mary testifies that mary
confessed to lying martha, mary, & mary
are hanged mary reports that the ghost
of mary appeared to her & proclaimed
her innocence mary appears mary testifies

the soft glow of a halo the soft glow of reading microfiche


Our Panel: Writing and Performing [Dis]embodied States of Being: The Poetics of Disability, Movement, Grief, and Sensuality—Shelia Black, Amber DiPietra, Lisa Gill, Violet Juno, and Denise Leto

Friday at 3:30pm Lincoln 4130
As four interdisciplinary artists, we propose a collaborative panel presentation which will involve poetry, multimedia, and cross-genre performance exploring the poetics of embodiment/disembodiment: how different and differently abled bodies move in space and time both on and off the page in relation to movement, language, loss, and sensuality. Through somatic practices such as qi gong, performance art, embodied poetry, meditation, and live writing we will present a kinetic, aural, and literary articulation of these states of being. Within a rigorous investigation into the myth of heroic, virtuosic embodiment in multiple expressive mediums we will explore the unexpected subject: bodies in difference via challenges in physical capacity or social and political presence. We will ask: How might we enact new meaning in translative states of being within an exacting aesthetic that is capacious enough to address the body in transformation? How can movement strain the “able-bodied” expectation? How can the textual and physical body evoke perspectival shifts in the definition and experience of desire? How can loss, death, breath, and non-breath inform both the dynamism and stasis of writing and performing? In our panel, we hope to surface an emergent discussion of elegy and healing, corporeal disjunct and concord through the prism of multiple genres. In so doing, we will cultivate conceptions of embodiment/disembodiment in which the disparate pieces are not so much reconciled as they are highlighted in a fractured communion of the imaginary.

[Dis]embodied Poetics Conference: Writing/Thinking/Being

Friday–Sunday, October 10–12, 2014
Naropa University Arapahoe Campus
2130 Arapahoe Avenue, Boulder
Join the Jack Kerouac School of Disembodied Poetics for the inaugural launch of [Dis]embodied Poetics, a three-day biennial conference occurring in conjunction with Naropa University’s and the Jack Kerouac School’s 40th anniversary year. This conference explores the intersections between innovative forms of creative and critical writing that are experientially rooted in contemplative practice.
We are interested in experiment, activism, performance, the archive, somatic practices, dharma arts, cross-genre, borderlands, the liminal, cross-disciplinary gestures, third-mind collaborations, bricolage, conceptual poetics, the five wisdoms of Maitri, mindful awareness, consciousness, Butoh, biorhythms, neo-benshi, and more.
Once a moniker of our itinerant historical roots as a school, “disembodied” now also reflects the protean in the experiment—how we investigate and torque static limits in form and content and bring forward new questions that both invigorate and challenge the current dialogue in writing today. This includes incorporating embodied poetics: the somatic, the performative, the cellular—open-textured/porous movement between living organisms, such as bodies, languages, texts. For four decades, our rich combination of experimentation, poetics, and contemplative awareness has generated innovation within our community and concentrically beyond.