19 May Holly Ann Jarvis – Social Distancing and Art, Episode 1
April 3rd, 630pm MST: streamed live on Facebook and Instagram
OGDEN CONTEMPORARY ARTS, an organization committed to engaging with our community through contemporary art forms, announced a new Virtual Art Series to begin on Friday, April 3rd in lieu of an in-person art stroll event. The series is an ongoing program of online art experiences designed to connect and inspire our community through the arts, particularly during these times of unrest and isolation. This new platform for engagement also raises important questions that the art world and creative businesses at large are grappling with, including the ways in which we must adapt and deliver arts-related programming.
“Amidst all of the dramatic changes over the past few weeks, we have been working to find a way to continue to support our creatives and engage our community,” says Venessa Castagnoli, OCA Executive Director. “By changing our format to a virtual platform, we can keep our artist community alive but also broaden our reach to creative communities all over the world.”
Episode 1 of the OCA Virtual Art Series featured a live stream performance by Ogden aerial artist Holly Ann Jarvis. “Isolation,” an original work performed with aerial silks to instrumental music and no physical audience, broadcasted through OCA’s social media platforms. Community members in Ogden and beyond tuned into Facebook and Instagram to watch live as Jarvis performed two five-minute sets interjected by a ten-minute artist commentary.
“Rather than reflect on feelings of isolation and disconnectedness, this performance is more about offering positivity and lightness through movement,” says Jarvis.
“Performing, moving, dancing – especially giving that to other people, makes me feel fearless. It’s like I’m escaping time – like I have nothing holding me back.”
Despite the physical isolation of the event, Jarvis aimed to impart these feelings of fearlessness through her performance in an effort to temporarily alleviate the overwhelming uncertainty that ripples through our global community. On another level, “Isolation” speaks to the current state of the performing arts from dance to theater to music, and how these art forms will ultimately be affected by the COVID-19 crisis. When we view performance through a screen and remove the ability to experience art in a live space, does the power of the message change? And what effect is left on the audience?
Based in Ogden, Jarvis is a full-time aerial artist who travels around the world as a performer and instructor. She studied visual arts at Weber State University and began her career as an aerial dancer in 2011.
Episode 1 of the Virtual Art Series was produced in collaboration with The Monarch, local videographer Kenn Sullivan, and local photographer Cam McLeod.