Lecture: Jacqueline Shea Murphy | Knees, Schools, Urges
Jacqueline Shea Murphy
Saturday, Jun 4 2022
3:30 PM - 4:30 PM

Jacqueline Shea Murphy will recap some of her first book, on Native American dance in relation with modern dance histories, and briefly introduce her forthcoming book which focuses on specific dance works by Indigenous dance artists and companies and ways they recalibrate structures both of coloniality and of contemporary dance. She will then offer thoughts around histories and practices — including her own — of settler artists and scholars engaging with Indigenous dance.


About the artist: Jacqueline Shea Murphy is associate professor in the dance department at UC Riverside, where she teaches courses in critical dance studies and in Iyengar yoga. She is author of “The People Have Never Stopped Dancing”: Native American Modern Dance Histories (University of Minnesota Press, 2007), awarded the 2008 de la Torre Bueno Prize® for outstanding book of the year in Dance Studies by the Society of Dance History Scholars. She is also founder and co-director of the Indigenous Choreographers at Riverside gathering project (https://icr.ucr.edu/). Her new book, Dancing Indigneous Worlds: Choreographies of Relation, forthcoming in 2022 from the University of Minnesota Press, emerges out of relationships Shea Murphy has been part of building over two decades, while she has been engaging with Native American and Indigenous dance in the U.S., Canada, and Aotearoa (New Zealand), traveling to witness Indigenous dance events, visiting with Indigenous dance artists, inviting dance artists to visit at UCR, and in various other ways amplifying ways this dance work articulates alternatives beyond the ongoing coloniality that constitutes what are today called the U.S., Canada and New Zealand, and that has long constituted Euro-American modernity. Shea Murphy is a 3rd to 10th generation settler to this continent, born in Lenapehoking (Brooklyn), raised in Mohegan and Abenaki territories (rural New England), now living in Huchuin (Oakland), with ancestors from Ireland, French Canada, Wales, England, and what is now Germany. She has a background in literary studies, with a focus on ethnicity and gender, and in creative writing.


Accessibility Note: The Box gallery is all on one level and has a rear entrance with a ramp. There are 2 small gender neutral single stall bathrooms on site. Please note that the bathrooms do not have a rail for transfer assistance and have limited space for larger mobility devices. Please contact the Box with any access needs and for more details:  info@theboxla.com 1(213) 625-1747


COVID protocol: As COVID safety negotiation continues to be part of our community choreography, Pieter will continue to strive to be transparent and clear about our practices, with the goal of always prioritizing the most vulnerable among us. All events will require masks and utilize our Button Buddies.


About the exhibition: A collaboration between Pieter Performance Space and The Box, curated by Jennie MaryTai Liu and assistant curator Alana Frey, Knees, Schools, Urges is a performance program and exhibition which invites ten dancers / artists to grapple with documented and undocumented histories of early 20th century modern dance in the place now known as Los Angeles. An examination of the absence of archived history of dance and dancers in the region, and the undersung work that historically minoritized artists have done in the field, the project looks both forward and backward, approaching the timeframe of the exhibition as an opportunity to document and create an archive which acknowledges the value of short-term local history as an ongoing project for present and future generations. 

Lester Horton, Prairie Chicken Dance, 1929. Photograph by Toyo Miyatake