~ cross cultural. socio political. female headed. interdisciplinary ~
Home is not something you have, or do not have
Home we create, you, me, we all together
Home is my body
Home resides in our collective breathing
our conversations, our shared smile
How it all started…..
The cross cultural dance/art collective FORGE, started in 2014 as a project between Hong Kong and the Netherlands. The cross cultural dialogue initiated was inspired by two performances “Second Tower of Babel” (STOB) on Kowloon Walled City in Hong Kong, and Breaking Bricks (BB) by Contemporary Dance Platform Utrecht & Amsterdam (DI U&A). Their works crossed paths, in 2014 in Hong Kong, where Marloes van Houten (artistic director of FORGE, acquainted with DI U&A) danced in the STOB performance. Thematically, the works found each other in their objective to explore deconstruction, chaos and re/new construction. Since 2017 the project turned into a collective and the cross-cultural dialogue now also includes other parts of Asia and Europe.
Theme / Approach
Forge is a female headed collective that takes an interdisciplinary approach while working mostly onsite, connecting with the history and atmospheric texture of the space, while developing and staging its exhibitions, performances, (dance) films. We believe artists have a role to play when its comes to alternative history writing and map making. They can use their high level sensitity to pick up on impressions present at a space, and engage with these to verbalize through their bodies, painting, photography a different story. A story not yet told. A story that did not make it into our history books, often for socio-political reasons.
The crosscultural collaboration centres around the theme Reinventing Home: from deconstruction to reconstructing a place/space/body known as home. ‘Home’ herewithin does not refer to a physical and geographical place, in the first place, but to a metaphorical place/space that qualifies as ‘home’. What does home mean to us, and how do we construct our identities and sense of belonging? Every two years specific sub-themes are chosen and questions are posed related to the overal theme ‘Reinventing Home’. The two year focus is decided upon by the local theme and based on the socio political issues relevant to address at that moment.
The Dutch team is currently led by the overall artistic director, Marloes van Houten. The Hong Kong/China team is led by May Yeung (visual art director), Ara Cho (dance/theatre director), supported by Kristopher Long (business consulting/management).
Fine arts director May Yeung invited the following artists and partners to collaborate with: painter Bennata So, engineer Ben Tsui, narrator Simon Yeung, lyricist Jeff Lin, water sommelier Ivan Lee, and Aqua House Hong Kong.
Artistic director/founder Marloes van Houten invited Dutch singers (Jeanine La Rose, Henk Kraaijeveld), musicians (Mark Alban Lotz), dancers/choreographers (Iris van Peppen, Ilse Evers, Rosa Allessie, Jort Faber, Suzanne de Bekker, Regilio Sedoc, Joe Mulier) and multiple Hong Kong and China based artists into a creative dialogue.
In Europe, we are extending our work to Portugal through a collaboration with designer Joana Fins, and dancer/choreographer Joana da Silva. In Asia, we made a first start to develop artistic collaborations with Japan, Taiwan and other parts of Asia. Artists travel back and forth, to teach workshops and create performance material in a collaborative way.