About Rachael’s Residency

“During my Moving Forward residency at WXYZ Studios, I will be interrogating and refining a line of physical enquiry that underpins and supports my solo dance. This solo dance has been performed in multiple iterations over the last year and will be presented at its own season at Dancehouse in March 2022.

Previously my improvisational practice has sought to find movement without embellishment within the boundaries of concert dance, which is typically comprised of pre-determined and pre-meditated actions. I have been fascinated by the impossibility of this task for quite some time. Through these attempts at physical honesty, I fancy that I can get a glimpse at what the body finds true, manifested as an action without false pretence. As I have studied neuroscience over the past two years I have become increasingly interested with the neural compulsion towards action, how this is normally executed via the frontal lobe, and how through thinking patterns my body can be tricked into revealing its true essence by falsifying the concealment of its motives. Kind of like a double negative – by faking what is false, the action becomes true. I refer to this process as “true dance”.

Of late, this thinking has taken a new turn as I consider sickness as a vehicle to move towards movement of the body without false ornamentation. I hope to refine a literature of sickness and extend my own palette for receiving illness so that the body in pain can be witnessed – at least by me. Often in performance and theatre it is the suspension of physical processes that is liberating – the performer feels no real pain and instead feigns anguish, torture, delight whilst masking their very real feelings of pain, ecstasy, anger. I am curious as to whether the complete submission to the physical will get me somewhere interesting.”

– Rachael Wisby

About Rachael Wisby

Rachael Wisby is a physical artist who lives and works in Naarm on the stolen lands of the Wurrundjeri people. Rachael graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts in 2018 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts (Dance). Rachael is a student of the body. She studies Chinese Medicine and develops work independently.