Justin Tornow is a North Carolina native currently located in Durham, NC. She is the artistic director of COMPANY, a producer of the local artist series PROMPTS, and a co-founder and -organizer with Durham Independent Dance Artists (DIDA.) She collaborates regularly with visual artist Heather Gordon and musicians Matthew McClure and Lee Weisert on new and touring projects, and continues an international collaboration/exchange with prospect.dance.company artist, Jana Schmueck. Justin’s work has been presented by the UNC Process Series, the Sax Open Festival in Strasbourg, France, UGA-Cortona in Cortona, Italy, Triangle Dance Project, GSO Fringe Festival, DUMBO Dance Festival, CoolNY Festival, 2012 Philly Fringe, and the NC Dance Festival In 2015-2016, Justin was a guest artist for the Rainbow Dance Company and Enloe High School, and will be a guest artist at NC State University in Fall 2016. She is currently part-time dance faculty at UNC-Greensboro. Justin received an MFA in Choreography from UNC-Greensboro (2010,) lived and worked in NYC from 2010-2013, then relocated to Durham, NC in 2013.
COMPANY's work experiments with (and within) formal structures. In the choreography, I am interested in the process of reorganizing notions, patterns, structures: I develop movement sequences that stem from a technical movement vocabulary, but often don’t appear natural or expected. I attempt to suspend moments in time, modifying the speed of the execution or the duration of a movement event. And I am interested in clarity of overall form, but curious about how that sense of clarity might arrive.
We often begin projects by examining a specific condition of some sort: the condition of a person or relationship, a method, a moment in time. Throughout the process, I hope that we might plumb new depths, and approach ideas-- big or small, aesthetic or theoretical-- that challenge and impact me, the artists involved, and anyone who interacts with the work.
Collaboration is a key part of my work to date. COMPANY often works with area musicians and visual artists, and I find that their insights and processes both support and challenge my own ways of working—for me, the perfect artistic arrangement.
No. 15 is one of such collaborative projects. First created and performed in summer 2015, this work constantly evolves to explore the notion of form-- variations of sequence, movement vocabulary, and groupings are installed in new visual contexts for each performance. And yet each time, the essence of the work remains. The dialogues that are newly created between the dancers, the data and algorithms, the visual context created by Heather Gordon, and the assembling-exploring-mapping-relating of the choreography all blend to create a fresh work each time it is performed.
- Justin Tornow, Artistic Director
Where you can see this artist's work:
'No. 15/The Value of Words'
Sunday, July 10th, 2016
7:45am at Kure beach access #1347
11:15m at Carolina Beach access #6
About 'No. 15 / The Value of Words ':
No. 15 / The Value of Words : a site-responsive installation of movement and visual art by Justin Tornow and Heather Gordon. Performed by COMPANY dancers, No. 15 uses segments of set choreography and improvisation to interact with a visual artwork, uniquely created with historical data about each site and the performers by Gordon. In this oceanfront iteration, the work will attend to the ephemerality of both image and environment.