RAD Lab x Catie Cuan
We have invited Catie Cuan, a Brooklyn-based artist and choreographer, for a month-long summer residency. Catie met lab director Amy LaViers at the Conference on Research on Choreographic Interfaces (CRCI) in March of 2017, organized by Sydney Skybetter, where common interests in consumer technology, choreography, and robotics drew the two together. The residency will explore questions about robot performance (What does it mean for a machine to "perform" or have "character"?), audience participation (Can "live" performance intersect with pre-programmed behavior? What are the limits of simulated randomness and/or nondeterminism?), intimacy with technology (Can a piece of technology "know" a person?), and suspension of disbelief (Can a performing robot pass a Turing Test? Can an audience pass a Turing Test?). Moreover, the residency will establish a longer-term collaboration that will produce a performance piece to be presented at several venues in Spring 2018. They are currently seeking additional performance opportunities for this work. Catie and Amy will use this time to establish a common vocabulary that crosses their disciplines -- where Catie will work with the technology in the lab and the lab will work with choreographic practices of Catie's in order to develop authentic empathy between their often disparate perspectives.
Catie Cuan is an artist and technologist based out of Brooklyn. As a performer she has worked with the Metropolitan Opera, the Lyric Opera of Chicago, Lisa Bielawa/KCET, Katherine Helen Fisher, Clare Cook, NY Fashion Week, and CATAPULT Entertainment, as well as Broadway choreographer Peggy Hickey. Her own choreography has been presented at venues and festivals such as the Actors Fund Arts Center, DanceNOW Raw, the Brooklyn Dance Festival, Zellerbach (Berkeley), NY Theater Barn, New York Musical Festival, and The Tank, where she won the inaugural XYZNYC Choreography Competition. Her passion for technology is evidenced by her previous work experience at Google/YouTube and Bain & Company before joining Color + Information, a digital creative agency, as Vice President. She is currently a digital consultant and avid VR researcher. She graduated with High Honors from UC Berkeley with a dual degree in Business Administration and Dance and was a visiting student at the University of Oxford, New College.