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It's Your Party

Nancy Buchanan and Stef Allespach

Illuminations Series #2

Curator Ulysses Jenkins

xMPL Theatre, UC Irvine

November 3, 2016, 7 – 9 pm

Much of the world is anxious to see what directions our powerful government will take following the upcoming Presidential elections. While our country is much observed by others, what do we, as citizens, know of the consequences of our government’s actions in other places? Or their history? How often are we presented with simplified clichés? This durational performance, inspired by our ongoing "war on terror" and its consequences, is organized by Nancy Buchanan in collaboration with Stef Allespach, Amy Alexander, Arshia Haq and Marjan Vayghan.


Nancy Buchanan received her BA and MFA from UCI. She is thrilled to return to orchestrate this event for the campus. Having worked in performance and video as well as static forms, the option of an ongoing event in which viewers may come and go as they please seemed appropriate for these times. As she began research for this piece, she was struck by similarities between documents belonging to her physicist father, Louis N. Ridenour, and today’s situation. Questions of war and peace, weapons stockpiles, and generalized public fear seem unending.


Stef Allespach is a American-German artist who lives and works in Los Angeles and Berlin. She is an Adjunct Associate Professor of Visual Arts at Los Angeles City College, her multimedia practice includes photography, collage, drawing and video. She has shaped the overall design of “It's Your Party” with Buchanan, and will present a video work that includes footage of artist Mira Hunter. Hunter is a Canadian artist who works in multimedia installation and performance. She is a second-generation Sufi Mevlevi/Whirling Dervish, and one of a few women, who began her training at 16-years-old. She currently studies sufism under Sherif Baba Catalkaya.


Amy Alexander is a digital media, audiovisual and performance artist who has also worked in film, video, music, tactical media and information technology. Alexander’s projects have been exhibited and performed internationally in festivals and museums as well as on the Internet, in clubs and on the street. She is an Associate Professor of Visual Arts at the University of California, San Diego. She will perform using PIGS, her software/hardware/percussive framework that uses silent percussion to create expressive, improvised cinematic performance. 


Arshia Haq is a filmmaker, writer and DJ based in Los Angeles. She is a co-founder of Discostan, which presents musical narratives from Eastern Europe, North Africa, the Middle East, South and Southeast. Narrative threads include migration, celebration, warfare, nostalgia, homeland, borders, often within realms of Islamic influence, mixing traditional forms, kaleidoscopic reinventions of pop culture and everything in between. For this “Party,” she will perform a live mix that will include her own sound art. 


Artist, writer, and fashion designer, Marjan Vayghan is also a curator, and the founder of Building Bridges, which links artists in the US to artists in Tehran, Iran. In 2007 she curated “Manifestation of Contemporary Arts in Iran” featuring works from 67 Iranian and American artists at MOCA Iran.

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