Ria Jade Hartley
"I am an interdisciplinary artist, researcher, activist and educator based in Manchester (UK). My work is located within the fields of Live Art and Contemporary performance practices taking forms described as devised theatre; time-based visual performance; site-specific; 1:1 & intimate works; socially engaged; durational; interventions; ritual; performance art; internet and screen based; still and moving image and installation.
Informed by my lived experiences, I make process-based biographically driven work that explores the intersections of race, class gender and sexual orientation. My body’s archive is opened, shared and witnessed through ritual, self-initiated rites of passage, and biomythologies. I take risks in working towards the potential of transformation (of both self & other) through creating contexts and experiences, and by holding spaces which invite, summon, activate and shift.
My practice overall is a contextual life enquiry, which responds to generations of systemic violence & oppression and is concerned with the decolonisation, healing, reclamation and transformation of my psyche & soma. Extensive auto-ethnographic research, tacit knowledge’s & esoteric practices heavily inform my work. Healing and integration is both my praxis & political action.
As opposed to more conventional modes of aesthetics, I labour on acts of resistance, self-determination, vulnerability, authenticity, empowerment and being uncompromising and unapologetic in my truth. I exist in a constant state of liminality, personal evolution and growth.
The next years are focused into four main areas: work for and of the self; work to share with audiences; collaboration and co-creation; and new models and practices of production for empowering creative communities.
I am currently working on my writing practice and developing new methods for writing as a neurodiverse person. Working closely with mentor Rajni Shah, I will be developing series of writings accompanied by still and moving image works over the next year. My writing year has been generously supported by the Futures Venture Foundation; Radical Independent Artist Fund.
This year I am also formalising methodologies for ‘Ecologies of Care’ which I began exploring in 2014. This series of workshops and talks focuses on access requirements, care strategies and centring health & wellbeing for artists. These will inform my newly established annual self-care retreat for artists of colour.
In 2019 I will premiere ‘Look No Further’, which presents the sixth anniversary of my Self Marriage (2013), where I marked my most intimate transformation by making a lifelong commitment to self. This work is commissioned by In-Between Time, ACCA, and Fierce Festival. The following year continues the development of ‘The Genetic Body’ series (2012 - 2021), exploring memory, trauma and epigenetic inheritance through a biomedical lens and culminates in a major exhibition at Birmingham Open Media in 2021."
Categories: Featured Artist
Date Posted: 21 March 2018