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Thunderstruck: Physical Landscapes

June 20, 2018 to January 27, 2019

Jenn Goodwin
Jenn Goodwin

About Thunderstruck

Thunderstruck: Physical Landscapes, curated by Jenn Goodwin, investigates the landscape in which contemporary dance is created, presented and received. Thunderstruck examines and questions the power that an exhibition bestows on its objects through collection, display and archival activities. It also considers the traces left behind in any physical or performance practice. In the process, this exhibition poses the question: is dance truly ephemeral, or does it stay with us long after a performance has ended?

This group exhibition is composed of works of art, film-based works, installations and dance related materials from the following artists: Shary Boyle, Francesca Chudnoff, Ella Cooper, Mario Côté, Aganetha Dyck, Brendan Fernandes, Angela Miracle Gladue, Deepti Gupta, La calq, Michelle Latimer, Brandy Leary, Tanya Lukin Linklater, Zab Maboungou, Lola MacLaughlin, Freya Björg Olafson , Omar Rivero, aka Driftnote, Tedd Robinson, Brian Solomon, Laura Taler, Rosanna Terracciano and Anne Troake.


Melting, Mourning and a Series of Impossible Tasks performed as part of the exhibition opening

Watch the performance highlights of Melting, Mourning and a Series of Impossible Tasks, a choreographic work by Brandy Leary, performed on and with local soil by Ontario artist Ess Hoedlmoser at Âjagemô on June 20. The marks left by this performance were preserved and we invite you to come see them during the exhibition.

Curatorial Statement

Dance in Canada today is politically, critically and artistically vibrant. Through a choreographic lens, artists, curators, and scholars propose unique perspectives and exchanges which continue to expand the landscape of dance.

Thunderstruck: Physical Landscapes presents the landscapes and layers of multiple dance communities, art practices and dancers from across Canada. It is a look at bodies, movements and dances within landscapes, as well as the body and dance as landscape. It also investigates the landscape in which dance is created, presented and received.

The exhibition title is twofold. In the literal sense, to be thunderstruck is to be struck by a major short-lived sonic explosion. Thunder is sound accompanied by lightning—like dance it is seemingly ephemeral and can have an immense impact. In the colloquial sense, to be thunderstruck is to be astonished, surprised and speechless. This exhibition presents the spirit of both meanings with a deep respect and passion for dance and its practitioners.

Read the full curatorial statement

Thunderstruck—Behind the Scenes

Jenn Goodwin

Now that the exhibition has been up for a while, and having had some time to reflect, I find myself thinking about all that went on behind the scenes that made the show possible. Because Thunderstruck’s focus is on dance, and because my background is in dance, I like to think of “behind the scenes” as a “back stage” of sorts. I have always been fascinated by what happens behind the curtain, and have used this interest as a lens in my own dance and film practice. Every exhibition, show, dance (and even every day) has its own untold details and stories. Aspects that are private, hidden, unknown, edited. For Thunderstruck: Physical Landscapes, I want to share a few stories that might otherwise only be known by the few of us who worked closely on the exhibition. Little in-between movements and moments that struck me.

Go behind the scenes
Art Bank technician Steven Allen

About the curator

Jenn Goodwin is a dance artist, curator, producer, and filmmaker. She is a recent graduate of the Master of Visual Studies in Curatorial Studies program at the University of Toronto, and prior to that she received a BFA from Concordia University in contemporary dance with a minor in video. Over the last 20 years, her dance work and short films have been shown across Canada and internationally. Goodwin is one half of the art band MORTIFIED (along with Camilla Singh), a band that uses choreography, drum kits, tap dancing, and cheerleading as its instruments. Goodwin has worked as Programmer/Artistic Producer of Toronto’s Nuit Blanche since its inception in 2006, and has curated performances and exhibitions for SummerWorks Festival, The Drake Hotel, and Harbourfront Centre. She has written for the Journal for Curatorial Studies, the Canadian Theatre Review and The Dance Current. She lives in Toronto with her husband and their two sons.

The curator would like to thank Sioned Watkins, Amy Bowring and Dance Collections Danse, Jeanne Holmes, Justine Chambers, Neville Quinlan, Barbara Fischer, Vivine Scarlett, DTRC, and all the artists in the exhibition.