Scar Tissue : A Body of Work

Scar Tissue is the 2005 disability culture project hosted by VSA Arts of Rhode Island and led by Petra Kuppers with the collaboration of Ana Flores, an internationally active Cuban-Amercian artist. The project follows on from the highly successful Tracks year.

The artworks we create focus on a re-vision of the scar - on our bodies' ability to change and grow, to connect to the environment in unfamiliar ways, and to emerge as new landscapes.

We worked with bees wax, reminding ourselves of the history of wax figures in anatomical displays, and of milagro figures as a genre in disability culture work. In our sessions, we created earth sculptures and explored mark-making in a variety of media, danced together and improvised pathways based on the time scars in the palms of our hands. We wrote poetry to reflect on our experiences of scars as places of connection, of time passing, and of memory.


(Amy's Scar, The Olimpias, 2005)

Shadow Scar, The Olimpias, 2005

Still from Scar Tissue Dance Video - section 'Scar Writing', The Olimpias, 2005

Still from Scar Tissue Dance Video - section 'Scar Writing', The Olimpias, 2005

Still from Scar Tissue Dance Video, The Olimpias, 2005

Still from Scar Tissue dance video, The Olimpias, 2005

(manipulated photograph from Scar Tissue workshop session, guest photographer Martha Kuhlman)

Workshop Sites

February 5th, 1-4: Carriage House Theatre, 7 Duncan Ave, Providence

February 19th, 12-5: Jonah Community Center, 830 Oakland Beach Avenue, Warwick

March 26th, 12-5: Burrillville Community Center, Lodge Road, Burrillville

April 18th, 12-5: Wood Pawcatuck Watershed Association, 203b Arcadia Road, Hope Valley

Many thanks to our host sites, and their generous invitations to us! Also many thanks to our Rhode Island beekeepers, who supplied us with our wax.


The Scar Tissue: A Body of Work exhibit emerging from the workshops will be shown in different venues, following an exhibit at the Sarah Doyle Gallery, Brown University, 26 Benevolent Street, Providence. Gallery Reception: May 6th, 2005, 6-8.

The Scar Tissue visual art and videos have also been shown at Performance Studies International, April 2005, at VSA Arts of New Mexico, Albuquerque, April 2005, and in a presentation at the Rhode Island Dance Alliance conference, Wellness in Dance and Sports (6th March, at Bryant University).

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