"As an artist and a human, I have a complicated relationship with care. What I care about is tested by the limits of free will. Since nature is so full of impermanence, the world changes every day without my active involvement. This could be dispiriting but it is also comforting, because it makes living an exercise in trust. I just exist and allow nature to take care. You never know what “take care” means when someone says it to you, but you can trust you are taken care of somehow. That is what care often looks like to me—the trust and the possibility of surrendering to whatever the outcome may be. 

 

On the other hand, I see care as a space of responsibility. I do care for future generations that may have trouble seeing the world the way I do or may struggle to communicate and relate with others. I actively use my art practice, which I see as an act of care, as the starting place for the next generation. This is where I reclaim my free will and its power to resist entropy. 

 

What moves me as an artist is the bravery to talk to every person in the world. My medium is dance, which defies language and ideology barriers. It also often defies my own verbal understanding, channeling the confusion, randomness, disassociation, and inspiration of my daily existence. These tentative and often contradictory aspects take shape in motion and through movement. Dance can be a form of feedback, but it can also be a form of neglect and refusal. It is sometimes a “physical rant” against an abyss of disembodied chatter. 

 

My current professional journey is a manifestation of trust, practice, curiosity, commitment and risk-taking. I have come to the realization that talent is just a fraction of the alchemy of dance. Only after I write my ideas down multiple times, repeat them out loud, and physicalize them with confidence does my artistic vision begin to emerge. I treat my practice like the mad scientist spending hours in the lab staring at the beaker from every angle in the room. I listen to my intuition because it is my honest and innermost voice. This is why I am most comfortable with improvisation. It is the best representation of my artistic and human self."

 ©2021 by Austyn Rich.