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The Sentient Archive: Bodies, Performance, and Memory

The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage
The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage
1608 Walnut Street, 18th Floor
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103
United States

www.pcah.us
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Above: Paul Klee, Angelus Novus, 1920. Indian ink, color chalk and brown wash on paper. The Israel Museum / Carole and Ronald Lauder / Bridgeman Images.
Above: Paul Klee, Angelus Novus, 1920. Indian ink, color chalk and brown wash on paper. The Israel Museum / Carole and Ronald Lauder / Bridgeman Images.
The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage
1608 Walnut Street, 18th Floor
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania 19103
United States

www.pcah.us
Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Vimeo

"A feast of diverse voices:" Top artists and cultural scholars theorize the body as a crucible of knowledge.

The new publication The Sentient Archive: Bodies, Performance, and Memory, from The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, gathers the work of leading artists and cultural scholars in performance, architecture, science, and the visual arts with essays that consider the nature of physicality and illustrate how the body serves as a repository for knowledge. Published by Wesleyan University Press, The Sentient Archive is available now at www.pcah.us/sentientarchive.

Edited by Bill Bissell, director of Performance at The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, and Linda Caruso Haviland, professor and founder/director of the dance program at Bryn Mawr College, the volume features 28 essays by contributors including Tomie Hahn, Patricia Hoffbauer, Jenn Joy, Ralph Lemon, André Lepecki, Bebe Miller, Juhani Pallasmaa, and Marcia B. Siegel, among others.

In drawing connections between body and archive, the essayists consider how and why the moving body generates and stores information for recall, retrieval, or reenactment. Collectively, the writers address issues of history, memory, and agency, but the knowing body, performed or reenacted, remains a focal point.

“This volume presents a marvelous and diverse group of thinkers who, as artists and scholars, are reckoning with the dancing body as a site of knowing, remembering, and performing,” writes Susan Leigh Foster, distinguished professor in the department of world arts and cultures/dance at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Elizabeth A. Behnke, author of Study Project in Phenomenology of the Body notes, “The Sentient Archive summons a feast of diverse voices, giving each the space to speak without forcing them into a single chorus. Instead, the book works like a landscape where these voices and their shimmering echoes intersect, inviting us in to join the unfinished, disappearing dance of movement and memory, of the sentient body and its archival impulse, its fragile yet insistent resistance to the slippage of time. Collectively, these voices testify to the whispers and the wild feelings in our bones that can hardly be put into words, but bear our social flesh forward.”

About The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage
The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage is a multidisciplinary grantmaker and hub for knowledge-sharing, funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts, dedicated to fostering a vibrant cultural community in Greater Philadelphia. The Center invests in ambitious, imaginative, and catalytic work that showcases the region’s cultural vitality and enhances public life, and engages in an exchange of ideas concerning artistic and interpretive practice with a broad network of cultural practitioners and leaders.

June 27, 2018

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The Pew Center for Arts & Heritage, Philadelphia