About the Grant

$15,000 to support I came here on my own (MAP 2011), a new video and performance project by robbinschilds, which contains two discrete but related pieces that feature a series of live duet performances and an accompanying multichannel diptych video work.

About the Project

While questioning issues of gender, national identity, and landscape during a 2009 residency, robbinschilds encountered New Zealand’s archetypal “man alone” trope. This estranged male figure has been a recurring theme in New Zealand literature and art for the last century. In I came here on my own., the artists intend to reframe the man-alone concept from a female-focused perspective with the depiction of two simultaneous but individual experiences of “woman Alone.” In a feminist reworking, robbinschilds subverts such archetypal male characteristics as man-in-nature, the lone traveler, and the questing hero.

In I came here on my own., robbinschilds plays with notions of subjectivity, singularity, and duality—intentionally blurring the line between the self and other. Doubling is portrayed on multiple levels, in the diptych nature of the video and bisected staging and choreographies. As longtime collaborators, this doubling motif is particularly potent for the artists. However, the relationships constructed and displayed within the piece reach beyond personal narrative—posing larger provocative questions about identity and shared authorship.


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