Award Winners / Artist Profile

About the Artist

Haruko Crow Nishimura (Seattle) is a dancer, a vocalist, and the artistic director of the performing arts group Degenerate Art Ensemble. She is always searching to discover how performance can create deeper connections and transformative awakenings. Some highlights of her work include a major exhibition with her ensemble at the Frye Art Museum in 2011, a commission by director Robert Wilson to re-interpret his work Einstein on the Beach in 2012, a 2012 Guggenheim Fellowship, a collaboration with composer Joshua Kohl and the Kronos Quartet in 2013-2015, and a large-scale site specific collaboration with Olson Kundig Architects. In 2016, she performed as a vocalist in Prague with the Czech rock legends Uz Jsme Doma with the South Czech Philharmonic orchestra. Her recent project SKELETON FLOWER was presented at the Spotlight USA Festival in Plovdiv, Bulgaria 2018 and will premier in Seattle this winter.

Haruko received a 2008 GAP to create a dance film that captures her butoh-inspired movement and physical theater in a fully realized video production. The theme of this work will be “the blending of nature with artifice.” Her vision includes “meticulous woven forests and landscapes made from the lease expected materials with my strange world of characters… a banana slug princess who’s slime is crochet. Her dress becomes a caterpillar cocoon made of sparkling spider web-like threads.” Haruko will collaborate with Ian Lucero, a video artist, and Mandy Greer, a whimsical textile artist. Intricate sets, music and animation will bring a new aspect to her movement.

In 2004, Haruko received a GAP to cover the registration fees for attending two workshops with master Butoh dancer Carlotta Ikeda and dancer Ruth Zapora (founder of Action Theater) respectively. Her own choreography and performance style borrows from both Asian and Western avant-garde techniques and combines these elements with a commitment to physical theater and live experimental music. These workshops will “help expand my vocabulary and skills to meet the demands of new projects.”

Haruko also received GAPs in 1994 and 2000.

Information included above was provided by artist at the time of application.
From the Artist

By receiving this Fellowship, I am able to continue to create, take more risks, and finish my newest work. It is a huge relief and a joy to have support for studio time, living expenses, and creative production materials. Having support that is not tied to a specific project or deadline allows me to experiment and stretch myself to new heights. I am so grateful for this wonderful support!!

Haruko Nishimura