in 2012 i started to feel awkward about sitting around in studios staring at my attractive friends for hours. i started to question the ethics of sitting in a chair and prompting people to do things – even if what they did remained their own decision – until we found the thing that satisfied me and my vision. i wondered whether i was playing out my perversion as a career. from autumn 2012 immigrants and animals became a collaboration between myself and Mira Kautto.
our work has been part of a continual investigation into how we can present our different female bodies together with agency on stage and why we might choose to parade ourselves in-front of a public in the first place. we rip off a lot of stuff we think is cool or really awful. i live in london and mira lives in helsinki.
we worked together between 2010 and 2016 to make dances of resistance, considering the politics and perversities of our casual desires – and those projected onto us – in our research. building ever-more elaborate fantasies from 80s and 90s pop and rock songs. our practice includes meeting somewhere in the world, listening to music together, watching films and tv shows, buying matching shoes, eating, discussing, making crappy films, writing applications and dancing. other times we email.
this was an independent conceptual dance outfit and we did want our critical context to be shaped by anyone else. DIY4eva.
visit our website:
immigrants and animals’ unprofessional class for the self-proclaimed dancer who doesn’t give a fuck about being professional and just wants to keep dancing. this class is the most vague performance practice score. we are practicing being present. we are practicing existing. the idea is to share an ‘alternative’ practice that isn’t about getting better at anything other than being present and dancing as you want and we create a space that enables that.
come share in our practice which is basically fucking about for ages in a room, getting tired and calling it work. most likely there’ll be some karaoke.
we don’t believe that we have anything to teach but we would like to share the space with you. maybe we learn by keeping on going. work it out.
we will start at a later time than professional class usually does. there will be loud music and constant dancing – also some singing.
we would encourage non-professional people who want to dance to come also.
statement of intent/anti-professional manifesto
we think being a professional mover-abouter in-front of other people is brilliant and weird and ridiculous. we remain dancers for hobby not only dancers for money. we are unprofessional dancers. not leaving our lives at the door of the studio and becoming clean dancing machines, but bringing our shit inside and getting dirty. we think nine or ten in the morning is far too early to go to class, that dressing in all navy blue brings good qi to the studio and that dancing on a stage need not look different to dancing in a club or a kitchen.
we think of dancing as something that we both do and enjoy and also as a space, and at the same time a tool, for working out our positions and continuing our conversations. rather than exploring our ideas through a specific kind of movement, or our work being an investigation into movement itself, we work on framing our conversations and our dancing in ways that have a theatrical intent, or a level of artifice that intends to produce a state of being in both the watchers and the doers. we are interested in what our performance does rather than what the dancing might look like.
This was our first attempt at sharing our practice in the form of a workshop. It’s difficult and complicated and maybe at some point we will try again.
here are three videos:
most recent Laura Laura trailer
Laura Laura trailer made before we started work on the show
Chisenhale Dance Space, London, September 2015
Buzzcut, Glasgow, March 2015
Goldsmiths University, London, March 2015
The Lone Wolf, the Dark Horse and the Underdog, RichMix, London, January 2015
Volksroom, Brussels, December 2014
XS Festival, Kutomo, Turku, November 2014
OuDance, Oulu, September 2014
Laura Laura feels like a beginning of something clearer for us, a meeting between what we say we do, what we want to do and what we do. We both love this performance.
This is the poster we made when we first performed William following a residency at Kutomo, Turku with Ehka-production in 2012. Some people didn’t like that we used images of men modelling underwear. We found it hilarious. Then we made a zine. Email if you want a copy: email@example.com.
We are not sure about the future of William. Or even who he is. We have performed him in different places and at different stages over the past four years and it seems he works best in clubs.
A new work. Coming soon. 2016 eatyourheartout.
A feminist practice of multiplicity and subjective prayer.
Something like a shared prayer to the sound of a washing machine cleaning your dirty laundry.
Something of a science fiction, a creation of a feminist utopia through the technologies of our bodies.
A giving in to the theatrical space, the gap between being impacted every day by socio-political forces and running with fantasy.
Dancing on the ground of broken machines and a destroyed patriarchy.
CUNST will be multiple – a physical experience, a philosophical meditation, political statement and a collection of our worst ideas.
took place in peckham in september 2015.
a week-long alternative artists’ discussion.
SEX is an anti-festival and 24 hour artist retreat, a day-long working holiday. We want to make time to spend thinking about making art. The politics of presentation are something we constantly negotiate as freelance makers and instead of being public, performing, presenting or networking bodies we would like to invite other artists to spend time with us in a more intimate setting for discussing making, doing and being.
This is a call out for five artists to each spend one day and a night with us in a London flat from noon til noon to talk and think about doing, making and being. The project will take place over a period of six days. We want to undo the professional body with everyday ‘realness’ and small intimacies by hosting the discussion in an apartment, cooking meals together, having a sleepover, sharing food, stories, grievances and questions for 24 hours.
SEX is our third proposition in a series of things (events/happenings/workshops) that seek to undo what being ‘professional artists’ seems to demand from us as we feel this often compromises how we want to work, what we want to do and how we want to be in the world.
The Lone Wolf, the Dark Horse and the Underdog
A series of performance events curated by immigrants and animals that will take place in the UK and Finland.
Pony by immigrants and animals
films by <ninja_fairy> & __jazzfanboy85~’ (FI) Laura Puska (FI) Blythe Smith (FI)
Rich Mix, London, January 2015
featuring 30 Skanks a commission awarded to Zinzi Minott, Heart piece by Anna Torkell and Laura Laura. Images directly above by Katarzyna Perlak.
This was our first project supported by Arts Council England.