Tia Kramer is a site specific performance artist, educator and social choreographer interested in gestures and actions of human connection in the everyday. She creates experiences and events that prioritize empathy and engage participants in collective self reflection.
Tia works both individually and collaboratively. Since 2014, she has been collaborating closely with choreographer, Tamin Totzke; together they produced Study of Time and Motion, a large-scale group performance series and film project presented at Henry Art Gallery, Seattle’s Georgetown Steam Plant and along the banks of the Duwamish River. They are currently developing an interactive performance, Each Other, recently shared in a series of public open rehearsals at MadART Studios in collaboration with the project, WE ARE A CROWD OF OTHERS. Her work has been funded by 4Culture Historic Site Specific Project Grant, Washington Artist Trust and Duwamish Revealed. Her events have been experienced both nationally and internationally. Emerging from rich fiber and craft traditions, she considers labor, community and habituated gestures foundational elements of her artistic practice.
Study of Time and Motion
Study of Time and Motion was a collaborative performance project co-produced with choreographer, Tamin Totke and performers: Ezra Dickinson, Mary Margaret Moore, Rachael Lincoln, Kt Shores and Aaron Swartzman, environmental designer: Grant Bowen, and historian: Elissa Favero. This multifaceted project challenged contemporary notions of productivity by prioritizing human connection. Through a series of site specific performances and durational open rehearsals we reactivated Seattle’s vacant Georgetown Steam Plant and the Duwamish River it once relied upon. Building upon our research of Steam Plant Designer Frank Gilbreth’s study of efficiency and inefficiency, we transformed repetitive object-oriented gestures into human-to-human relationships to reveal the qualities of human connection, support and care. Incorporating video installation at the plant and public signposts along the environs of the Duwamish River, this interdisciplinary project invites participants to ask:
What impact does our desire for progressive perfection have on human interaction and our relationships with constructed and natural environments?
Our research and accumulated knowledge on Gilbreth’s Study of Time and Motion was activated again for another site specific performance series, Approaching Proximity, created for the exhibition Six Weeks, in Time, at the Henry Art Gallery in Seattle, WA. Collectively our group of performers mirrored gestures of the audience and dissected solo pedestrian acts — putting on and taking off a jacket, tying shoes, checking a smart phone — creating opportunities for audience to consider their own physical experiences and embodied participation in cultural construction.
Each Other (working title) was a public open rehearsal series presented at MadArt Studios during our residency from Nov 2016 through Jan 2017. Building upon interactions with the public, we began collecting gestures that will be the seeds for our next group work. Each Other is both a response and an offering in this turbulent political era. We are attempting to solve the incalculable problems of our times by examining the body as a record of lived experience and a vehicle for deep empathy.
Short Talks, Short Walks
Short Talks, Short Walks are a series of site-specific plaques installed at Smoke Farm in Arlington, WA. After Anne Carson’s ‘short talk’ poetic form, the text illuminates a connection between participants physical experience on the farm and overlooked experiences from their everyday life. The poetic signs conclude with a directive to enact a physical gesture that connects the act of reading to their somatic experience.