Inside the Pillow Lab: LaJuné McMillian


For this project, LaJuné McMillian is developing "Spirit and Child", a series of prayers between Child and Spirit, presented as a live motion capture performance and installation. A healing ceremony unfurls as Child extends gratitude to Spirit for holding them through times of struggle and abandonment. Spirit manifests as a guide, reinforcing embodiment as a robust technology. "Spirit and Child" acts as a compendium of our collective experiences—beginning with the introduction of portraiture, expanding on the ritual of movement, and broadening to meditative aphorisms—and in closing, Spirit reminds us that home, a place many spend lifetimes seeking, lives inside ourselves. The avatars and movements are self-created using motion capture and 3D modeling software. About LaJuné McMillian LaJuné McMillian is a multidisciplinary artist and educator creating art that integrates performance, extended reality, and physical computing to question our contemporary forms of communication. They are passionate about discovering, learning, manifesting, and stewarding spaces for liberated Black Realities and the Black Imagination. McMillian believes in making by diving into, navigating, critiquing, and breaking systems and technologies that uphold systemic injustices to decommodify our bodies, undo our indoctrination, and make room for different ways of being. McMillian has had the opportunity to show and speak about their work at Pioneer Works, National Sawdust, Tribeca Film Festival, Times Square, and Art && Code’s WEIRD REALITY. McMillian was previously the Director of Skating at Figure Skating in Harlem, where they integrated STEAM and figure skating to teach girls of color about movement and technology. They have continued their research on Blackness, movement, and technology during residencies and fellowships at the Jerome Hill Artist Fellowship, Eyebeam, Pioneer Works, NYU ITP, Barbarian Group, and Barnard College. INSIDE THE PILLOW LAB LaJuné McMillian RESIDENCY DATES: Nov. 8-19 APPEARING IN FILM: LaJuné McMillian Rena Anakwe Zeelie Brown LAMB RaFia Santana MaryAnn Talavera Nia Witherspoon MUSIC: LaJuné McMillian Rena Anakwe Zeelie Brown LAMB RaFia Santana MaryAnn Talavera Nia Witherspoon NEL SHELBY PRODUCTIONS Nel Shelby, Producer Taylor Hutchison, Videographer Benjamin Richards, Graphic Animation Sonia Bartolomeo, Editor & Project Manager The 2023-2024 PILLOW LAB RECEIVES LEADERSHIP SUPPORT FROM: The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation © 2024 Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival, Inc.

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