2020 Residency Artists
Bhumi B. Patel is a queer, desi artist/activist who creates intersectionally feminist, multidisciplinary art to explore the contradictions of her inner landscape where she is brown, queer, working class, and a woman. As a dancer, choreographer, curator, educator, writer, and historian, she works from a trauma informed, social justice oriented perspective. Her work traverses dancing, choreographing, curating, educating, writing, and scholarship. She earned her MA in American Dance Studies from Florida State University in 2014 and her MFA in Dance from Mills College in 2017. She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Dance and English Literature - Creative Writing from Agnes Scott College. Patel is on faculty at West Valley College, Lone Mountain Children’s Center, and Shawl-Anderson Dance Center. Patel’s work has been presented at SAFEhouse Arts, LEVYsalon, Shawl Salon, max10, Studio 200, Molissa Fenley and Friends, Summer Performance Festival, RAWdance's Concept Series, and the first Queering Dance Festival.
pateldanceworks creates queer, feminist movement art that focuses on the intersection of embodied philosophy and dynamic sensation over stagnant form. As a trauma informed, social justice oriented dancemaker, Bhumi B. Patel prioritizes collaborative processes in her work. Dancers and Patel combine interests to explore pain, grief, body memory, and awareness. Patel makes multidisciplinary art to learn how to embrace the contradictions of her inner landscape where she is a brown, queer, working class woman. Moving through the world as a queer artist of colour, the pursuit of collective safety is both an act of labor and of necessity. Making art is her way of coping with the world at the moment.
Evan Johnson is a San Francisco based theatre-maker, playwright and teaching artist. He is the writer/performer of Don’t Feel: The Death of Dahmer, PANSY and BARN OWL. Don’t Feel was created at Mama Calizo’s Voice Factory in 2010 and was featured in the Bay Guardian’s year-end-review as one of the best new plays of the year; Don’t Feel returned for a limited 6-show run at Z SPACE in 2017 (Murmuration Festival of Solo Plays); PANSY has been seen in San Francisco (New Conservatory Theater Center, SAFEHouse for the Arts), Blue Lake, CA (Dell’Arte International), Portland, OR (Post5 Theatre) and New York City (United Solo Festival at Theatre Row). In 2006, Evan graduated Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre and he has worked independently as both a teaching artist and freelance performance maker ever since. Evan has collaborated with Bay Area choreographers Jesse Hewitt (FREEDOM), Hope Mohr Dance (ridetherhythm), Liz Tenuto (The Two Legits, In the Velvet), and Deborah Slater Dance Theater (A Seat At The Table). He teaches writing and performance-based classes to seniors and young people for the San Francisco Recreation and Parks Department and performs in drag at “Martha T. Lipton (the failed actress)” at Piano Fight (“So You Think You Can Lap Dance?”) and local clubs (The Stud, SF Oasis). He is currently teaching and directing remote collaborations via Zoom with his COSMIC ELDERS THEATRE ENSEMBLE, weekly “Play in Place!” theatre workshops sponsored by SF Village, and The Hub: A Remote Improv Class for Teens. Check out: www.evanjohnsonplays.com
Cosmic Elders Theatre Ensemble is an irreverent group of performance makers born out of a weekly class called Improv and Theatre Games for Seniors (aged 60 and up) offered through the city's Recreation and Parks Department. Since 2015, they've cultivated an environment of creative risk-taking and playfulness for them to boldly express themselves and share personal stories inside theatrical forms, led by Director/Facilitator Evan Johnson. These older actors share a desire to shatter society’s assumptions about seniors while sharing original stories with courage and dignity. Johnson has witnessed firsthand just how profound this level of sharing can be and wants to elevate their bravery while crafting a universal story about the search for home, the need for community and the decision to embrace the unknown.
The members of the Cosmic Elders Theater Ensemble are: Raina Cohen, Helen Dannenberg, Grace D’Anca, Cynthia Dear, Liz Dunn, Mary Hones, Denise Larson, Beth MacLeod, and Perry Tom.
Check out excerpts from the culminating performance to see how the artists developed their work through the Residency.