two black persons huddled together against a muddy cliff

Work in Progress: Space Carcasses

Onye Ozuzu
Tuesday, April 23, 2024 at 7PM
EMPAC Studio 1—Goodman

Space Carcasses is a new work-in-progress dance performance by Onye Ozuzu that explores how architectures haunt the body and impart their histories to us as physical effects. Throughout their EMPAC residency, Ozuzu and her collaborators will develop a virtual space that blends digital residues of different sites along the historical transatlantic slave trade (from Savannah, Georgia; Reunion Island in France; and Northern Nigeria). Drawing from movement scores and data Ozuzu developed on location, the residency will explore how the work’s “space carcasses” enable the body to extend itself into these complex and emotionally intense environments. Space Carcasses combines its virtual set with audiovisual traces, which were recorded from performers’ dancing bodies as they interfaced with present-day buildings in the research sites. As skin, container, exoskeleton, or mask, Space Carcasses’s layered scenes forge a composite site that can both record and re-contextualize Afrodiasporic relationships to place.

Ozuzu’s Space Carcasses is inspired by Africanist, circular conceptions of time and expands on these traditions to enable connections to a communal self and to ancestors. Ozuzu situates the body as a technology with the power to access different moments across collective experience. Space Carcasses is performed in an architectural corner created within EMPAC’s Studio 1, which also functions as a projection surface. Large-scale video projections will trail and replay live dancer’s movements in real-time, and a sound dancer will be created from EMPAC’s spatialization sound technology.

Work-in-progress events offer a window into the research, development, and production of new works by artists in residence at EMPAC. These free events open up a dialogue between our audiences, artists, and EMPAC staff.

Main Image: Production still: Onye Ozuzu, Space Carcasses, 2023. Courtesy the artist. 

Dates + Tickets

Work in Progress
Work in Progress: Space Carcasses
Onye Ozuzu
Tuesday 23
7:00 PM
April 2024
Presented By

EMPAC Spring 2024




Space Carcasses is a National Performance Network (NPN) Creation & Development Fund Project co-commissioned by Bates Dance Festival (Lewiston, ME), The QDance Center (Lagos, Nigeria), Bridge Live Arts (San Francisco, CA), and NPN. For more information:

Space Carcasses is supported by the New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, with lead funding from the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation and The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. This work is also made possible in part through an EMPAC Production Residency and NCCAkron Research Residency.

This work was supported by a grant from the Simons Foundation.