Because of the health crisis which has forced cultural centres to be closed since mid-March, in recent weeks the team at the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum has embarked on an internal reflection process on its work in the past few months and the new scenarios and challenges which we have to define and cope with, despite the uncertainty.
The response morphed into an exceptional challenge: a tour through the collection of the empty museum which the dancer and choreographer Jon Maya Sein and the Kukai Dantza team have managed to interpret via dance, music and song.Other bodies and sounds once again immerse us in the galleries that harbour the collection's works of art chosen and arranged following the particular story ABC. The Alphabet of the Bilbao Museum devised by the writer Kirmen Uribe. The result is an extraordinarily beautiful audiovisual story lasting 19 minutesalmost a single long shot through the museum's galleriesthrough which we discover secret new meanings of paintings and sculptures through dance and music.
Kukai Dantza describes this work in this way: "At this unusual time, museums look different. They sound different. Everything is perceived differently than usual. Artists and visitors approach museums differently.
"This is the challenge we set for ourselves: a unique journey through the alphabet of the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum, a new interpretation of the amazing conceptual journey that the writer Kirmen Uribe developed for the museum's collection. We are playing at being unique, at viewing and listening to the museum from this solitude, to feel what the works and the spaces want to tell us."
Based on this new creative experience, the museum and BBKan enthusiastic facilitator of the projectare suggesting that the audience members each become the solitary visitors during the exhibition, guided by a creation that encourages them to immerse themselves in the museum's galleries in a unique way, to revisit the Bilbao Fine Arts Museum and to travel into the heart of art like the first person to walk through its galleries.
At a glance
Coordination and production:
Jon Maya Sein
Alain Maya, Eneko Gil, Leire Otamendi, Urko Mitxelena
Maite Larburu & Carlos Taroncher
Kukai Dantza is a dance company that was founded and is headquartered in Errenteria (Gipuzkoa). It was created on the initiative of the dancer and choreographer Jon Maya Sein. In 2001, Kukai made a contemporary creation based on traditional Basque dance, spearheading encounters with other artistic languages and dance styles.
It was launched with the release of a brief choreography, Deiadarra, and since then, it has developed its artistic project through different avenues. For example, its close relationship with Tanttaka Teatroa has led to the creation of a variety of performance projects featuring its highly characteristic language. In 2008, it embarked upon a new creative journey by inviting international choreographers into the company. By doing so, Kukai Dantza has undertaken projects with choreographers the likes of Marcos Morau, Israel Galvan, Cesc Gelabert, Sharon Fridman, La Intrusa Danza, Ione San Martin and others.
One of its hallmarks is its ability to adapt to special languages, spaces and events, developing artworks in contexts associated with film, architecture, fashion and food.
Also worth highlighting are Kukai Dantza's numerous partnerships with prominent musicians, including Oreka Tx, Orquesta Sinfónica de Euskadi, Carlos Núñez, Iñaki Salvador and Juan Mari Beltran. The company is headquartered in Errenteria, where it has undertaken a project in conjunction with the town hall to raise awareness and create audiences. In the social sphere, it undertakes integration, training and solidarity programmes via dance.
Kukai Dantza has garnered numerous awards in its career, including the National Dance Award in 2017, the Max Best Dance Show award in 2017, the Max Best Dance Troupe awards in 2015 and 2017, the Umore Azoka Leioa Honorary Award in 2016, the Best Dance Show at the Huesca Theatre and Dance Fair in 2014 and 2016, the Special Mention at the Valladolid Street Arts Festival and the Donostia Theatre Award in 2003.