19 Jun Florinda Camilleri for Movimento: A feminist posthumanist lense
Join us for the fourth appointment in the ŻfinMalta Movimento series for 2023 with our guest, Florinda Camilleri. Offering a brief overview of her research into feminist posthumanist perspectives of public space, Florinda leads audiences through an exercise in her developing practice “wanderMust” (an ethically-responsive need to wander the world by moving with-in it).
Who are you?
In formal terms, I am a dance artist, a community pharmacist and a public space researcher. In esoteric terms, the fabric of my life is unfolding across many different kinds of threads, stitches, colours, and textures. In posthuman terms, I am a multitude of agents, of animal, earthly, and technological matters, immersed in many complex webs of agents, my body, sticky with stories, politics, labels, is my primary tool for learning, thinking, making, being “human” within these webs.
I am highly sensitive to environments and their human and more-than-human agents, and am perpetually learning how to relate and respond to them softly and openly. With curiosity as my fuel, I venture within the cracks, the inbetweens of things. This is where I feel I can flourish, and where I enjoy inviting others to join me in conversations and creative processes.
(Movement) is a language - a device for communication, expression, and connection. And most fundamentally, it is a source of joy in my life.
for ŻfinMalta’s Movimento
‘Becoming Posthuman by Moving with-in Public Space’
21st June / 18:30
ŻfinMalta Studios, Valletta
How would you describe your practice?
My practice addresses public space through feminist posthumanist perspectives, using body, site, and camera as my main tools. It is feminist as it involves “an affirtmative gesture, a leap of faith in what humans may still be capable of”, and posthumanist as it questions “the dominant idea of the human based on an assumption of superiority by a subject that is white, male, Eurocentric, practising compulsory heterosexuality and repreoduction, able-bodied, urbanized, speaking a standard language” (Braidotti, 2022). With these lenses and tools, I am exploring the boundaries of what it means to be human in the context of public space. Situating my practice in public space means, to me, immersing my body within different sites and allowing performances to emerge, rather than inserting my performance into the site. It involves making myself open to the complex affordances of different sites, allowing for immanence and emergence, while engaging responsively and responsibly.
I landed upon the term “wanderMust” to describe my practice because I feel a sense of urgency to wander so as to learn new ways of relating to my environments. For me, the human body is both subject and object of my practice, both the apparatus for knowledge production and the subject of study. I approach the camera as a posthumanist research tool, a technological extension of my body through which I can communicate what matters to me far beyond the ephemeral moments of performance, through different spaces and times.
How would you describe your relationship to movement?
I often think of movement as a process of matter-ing, involving the mobilisation of materials and enactments of agency (gestures through which the materials are choosing what matters). It is a language – a device for communication, expression, and connection. And most fundamentally, it is a source of joy in my life.
What relationship have you had or do you hope to build with ŻfinMalta?
I’ve had the privilege of being entangled with ŻfinMalta since its establishment in 2014. I was a member of the dance company until 2018, and since then, I have been involved intermittently as a performer, teacher, and rehearsal director. ŻfinMalta continues to be a precious space for me personally, it supports my growth and development as a dance professional. I believe it is also a key institution within the Maltese arts scene.
“ŻfinMalta continues to be a precious space for me personally, it supports my growth and development as a dance professional. I believe it is also a key institution within the Maltese arts scene.”
Has your work ever crossed paths/collaborated with dance?
I will address this question slightly differently. I do not consider my work as dance in the traditional sense. It is what is referred to as site-specific screendance practice, emerging from within a specific site and performed mainly for screen. I use the choreographic sensibility and nuanced orientation to space I have acquired as a dancer to tune my attention towards the movements of bodies within public spaces.
What can we expect from this movimento talk?
This Movimento session will include a brief presentation of my work – an outline of the concepts I am busy with and how I apply them within my practice – and a chance for audiences to try out some exercises for themselves. No prior experience needed, and cameras are welcome!