BAR HARBOR — Members of the Detroit-based artist collective Complex Movements will discuss their interactive, multimedia performance work exploring connections between complex science and social justice movements at College of the Atlantic on Friday, Sept. 27 from 7-8:30 p.m. The talk will be held in the Gates Community Center.
In their talk, entitled “Dandelions, Ants, Ferns, and Community Power,” Complex Movements members will share the ways their work connects and amplifies local organizing efforts through creative experiences.
Group members include: Wesley Taylor, graphic designer/fine artist/animator; Waajeed, music producer/sound designer/filmmaker; Invincible (ill weaver) lyricist/organizer/filmmaker; L05 (Carlos Garcia), multimedia artist/performance systems architect; and Sage Crump, producer/cultural strategist.
“I’ve been reading about the super-hybrid performance work of Complex Movements for the last four or five years and I could not be more excited to have them on our campus and in this community,” said COA performing arts professor Jodi Baker.
“These folks have pretty much forged a whole new understanding of what an art collective can be and what it can do. The principles they are working from are revolutionary. Their vision and methodology is inspiring. And the practice is unbelievably generous — so smart and so strong. I don’t know of any other contemporary collective working with such integrity of purpose or building a more important body of work.”
The visit is sponsored by the COA Thoreau Environmental Leaders Initiative, which is funded by a grant from the Henry David Thoreau Foundation.
“Complex Movements’ work transcends disciplines by blending themes as diverse as quantum physics, social justice, science fiction, community activism, and hip hop to create something truly unique. I think their approach will resonate deeply with many different people,” said COA student and Thoreau Planning Committee member Donovan Glasgow.
Complex Movements’ most well-known work is Beware the Dandelions — an interactive pop-up installation piece which guides audience members through a fantastical narrative about oppression, activism, and revolution.
“The piece is a different way to facilitate the change making we want to support,” said collective member ill Weaver. “The science fiction parable told in the performance can spark radical imagination. The stories shared in the installation give people an opportunity to reflect on lessons from current and past movements, and the community organizing is where we practice those lessons. ”
In 2019 United States Artists awarded Complex Movements at $50,000 unrestricted grant.