Performances by Orlando Johnson & Matthew Williams in conversation with NO GRIDS NO MASTERS

Saturday / May 11 / 6pm-8pm

In conjunction with the exhibition Liz Ensz: NO GRIDS NO MASTERS, artist Liz Ensz has invited artists to participate in a series of performances in response to their exhibition. This evening will include performances by Matthew Williams and Orlando Johnson.

Matthew Williams and Orlando Johnson have danced, moved together and collaborated for years, including as co-organizers of the Move Move Collaborative. They will be presenting individual works of movement performance alongside each other for this event.

Orlando Johnson will perform As Yesterday, As Today, accompanied by musician Bashi Rose. The work was first performed on Indigenous Peoples Day 2020.  The work evokes emotional expressions of every kind seeking to be placed upon ears which have grown deaf and blind over time, lost in this culture. Through the work, voices of African and Indigenous ancestors and those present today are marked in names, and dates and events through movement, gesture and lamenting.

Matthew Williams will present Warming up, I’m ready. Over the last year this work has taken the form of workshops and performances–participatory, solo, and collaborative. This iteration is created in dialogue with materials from NO GRIDS NO MASTERS. It invites us to ask “What does it feel like in our bodies to be ready…to express ourselves, to be present with each other, to be in creative process?”

Orlando M. Johnson
b. 1975, Maryland
Lives and works in Baltimore, MD

Orlando M. Johnson is a multimedia artist who finds inspiration from the great American status quo and how it has affected his ancestors and him in the present

Matthew Williams
b. 1990, Illinois
Lives and works in Baltimore, MDPerformances by Orlando Johnson & Matthew Williams in conversation with NO GRIDS NO MASTERS

Matthew Williams (they/them) is a Baltimore-based dancer, somatic facilitator, and lifelong student of the body.  Their performance practice is inspired by the human body as a site for choice, liberation, and a means to be in relationship with place and community across differences.  Matthew is engaged with Western Somatics, choreographic and improvisational movement arts, voice work, and the study of functional anatomy.  They are currently a student of Somatic Experiencing and the Axis Syllabus.  They are a longtime member and organizer of Move Move Collaborative.  Matthew has taught in various universities and organized community-based educational opportunities.  Their performance work has been supported by Labbodies Performance Art Review, Transmodern Festival, Baltimore Independent Dance Artists, Move Move Collaborative, and Baltimore Office of Promotion & the Arts.  They have been supported by residencies at the Ucross Foundation and Playa Summer Lake.  Matthew earned a BA in Cultural Studies from Bates College and MFA in Theatre Arts from Towson University.

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