Jaamil Olawale Kosoko is a Nigerian American poet, curator, and performance artist originally from Detroit, MI. He is a 2018 National Dance Project Award recipient, 2017 Princeton Arts Fellow, a 2017 Jerome Artists in Residence at Abrons Arts Center, and a 2017 Cave Canem Poetry Fellow. He lectures, speaks, and performs internationally. His previous work #negrophobia was nominated for a 2016 Bessie Award and has toured throughout Europe having appeared in major festivals including Moving in November (Finland), TakeMeSomewhere (UK), SICK! (UK), Tanz im August (Berlin), Oslo Internasjonale Teaterfestival (Norway), Zurich MOVES! (Switzerland), Beursschouwburg (Belgium) and Spielart Festival (Munich), among others.
He is a Co-Curator of the 2015 Movement Research Spring Festival and the 2015 Dancing While Black performance series at BAAD in the Bronx; a contributing correspondent for Dance Journal (PHL), the Broad Street Review (PHL), and Critical Correspondence (NYC); a 2012 Live Arts Brewery Fellow as a part of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival; a 2011 Fellow as a part of the DeVos Institute of Art Management at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; and an inaugural graduate member of the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance (ICPP) at Wesleyan University where he earned his MA in Curatorial Studies.
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Chameleon is a multi-tiered, multimedia performance project by Jaamil Olawale Kosoko that examines the shapeshifting, illegible, and fugitive realities of Black diasporan people within the American context. Using complexity theory—the study of adaptive survivalist strategies inside complex networks or environments—as a choreographic device, this work explores how minoritarian communities record and affirm their existence through collaborative actions and protests that archive personal, freedom narratives as a way to subvert culturally charged fields of systemic oppression, loss, and erasure. Through live feed and augmented reality media, the borders between body, mind, and environment become porous, illuminating and making material otherwise invisible connections between objects, ideas, freedom narratives and experiences.
Chameleon is supported in part by the Princeton Artist Fellowship, New England Foundation for the Arts’ National Dance Project, individuals supporting the project through Kickstarter Drip, and a commission from New York Live Arts’ Live Feed Residency program with additional support from the Joseph and Joan Cullman Foundation for the Arts, the Mertz Gilmore Foundation, the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council with special thanks to Council Member Corey Johnson, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, the Jerome Robbins Foundation, the Fan Fox & Leslie R. Samuels Foundation, the Scherman Foundation, and the Shubert Foundation.
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Support Jaamil with a monthly donation! Whether you can give $1, $5, or $500 as a monthly commitment, you will be hugely contributing to the growth and process of this current work, work that is committed to uncovering difficult truths and engaging in collective healing processes. Along the way, receive benefits and updates ranging from monthly reading recommendations, behind the scenes glimpses, and excerpts of upcoming writings and podcast content.
Join us and support today at https://d.rip/jaamil-kosoko.