Francesca d’Ath is a cross-disciplinary artist, performer, writer, & designer and coder, coming from dance, choreography, and a bit of sex work, a queer trans femme immigrant, multiethnic and Muslim-ish, living in Berlin via Australia, Aotearoa, Canada, South Africa.
The child of a Pakeha mother(*) from Aotearoa, and a West Asian Muslim father(*) from Johannesburg, South Africa, she was born and grew up first in Toronto, Canada, on land of the Mississaugas of the Credit, Anishinaabeg, Chippewa, Haudenosaunee, Wendat, and now home many First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples.
She then lived in Aotearoa, in Te Whanganui-a-Tara (Wellington), the iwi of Te Āti Awa, and Tāmaki Makaurau (Auckland), the iwi of Ngāti Whātua. She moved to Australia, training at Victoria College of the Arts in Naarm (Melbourne) on Wurundjeri and Boonwurrung lands of the Kulin Nation. She lives in Berlin, Germany.
She is a practitioner and theorist of movement and physicality, who works across multiple practical and theoretical disciplines, mediating dance, installation, performance and live art; photography and film; text; digital art and technology.
She relates selfhood and self-experience to and against the dominant cultural defaults of gendered and racialised physically active ‘bodies’. Selfhood (identity, personal, collective, historical) forms a primary background to her work, as does training, physical labour, endurance, suffering, and discipline, in particular ballet, cyclocross, and rock climbing.
When not working in theatre and technology, Francesca reads and writes non-fiction and fiction, with an emphasis on feminine, and trans people’s selfhood and representation, particularly for those with a multiethnic, migration and Muslim heritage.
(*) It’s messy complicated and that’s as much as I currently know.
(This is way out of date.)
Francesca has made the performances monadologie, hell, temperance, and extermination in Melbourne, all the people i can remember sleeping with…, pestilence, and crush in Adelaide, apocalypse prd, bitches, and carnivore in Guangzhou, China and other works for stage and film in Australia, Taiwan, and Europe. Francesca has had residencies and commissions at ADT Australian Dance Theatre, ANAT AIR Residency at the Swinburne Centre for Astrophysics, Guangdong Modern Dance Company on an Asialink Performing Arts Residency, Taipei Artist Village in Taiwan, and Park19 Artists Studios in Guangzhou; ROSAS/PARTS, and Bains Connective in Brussels. She graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts School of Dance in 2001, was a DanceWEB Scholarship recipient to ImPulsTanz in Vienna in 2003 and a choreographer at SiWiC – Swiss International Choreographic Workshop in Zürich in 2005, directed by DV8 founder Nigel Charnock.
She has performed in the work of Dasniya Sommer, and Virgina Barratt in Berlin, Roméo Castellucci in Brussels and Bolognia, Hans Van den Broeck in Vienna, Daniel Jaber, ADT Australian Dance Theatre, and Gala Moody in Australia, Cie. Denise Lampart in Zürich, Ivo Dimchev in Vienna, and Long Yunna in Guangzhou. Francesca has received funding from Arts Victoria, Arts SA, Australia-China Council, Asialink, Ian Potter Cultural Trust, Besen Family Foundation, ANAT, and Australia Council. From 2009, she branched out from theatre to work in code and design, and photography / film.
Francesca also works as artistic and rehearsal assistant, dramaturg, and provides conceptual advice and production management. Currently for Onyx Carmine / S.J Norman for Rest Area, Stone Tape Theory, and Take This, For It Is My Body; and for Cie.OFEN. Recently for Melanie Lane’s WonderWomen, and Isabelle Schad for Fugen, also her previous works, An Unfolding Process, and Der Bau; for Ivo Dimchev’s Fest at ImPulsTanz 2013, Vienna; many works and projects with Dasniya Sommer, and others.