Throughout her career Laura Taler has explored how memory and history are linked to movement. She’s used cinematic and choreographic devices to articulate how the body is able to carry the past without being oppressed by it. In her recent work, she is exploring how change is possible by questioning her understanding of what it means to move forward. To do this she as started to practise the repetitive movements of Tai Chi. This exploration of foreign gestures includes broad questions about how the body relates to notions of certainty, doubt, and progress. She tries to think of progress not as a line that moves forward to an ultimate precipice but as a spiral that cycles over the same ground while evolving slightly over time. This idea of progress as repetition helps her to understand that the questions surrounding this project may not require answers, but rather a continual corporeal practice of the questions themselves. How can she use movement to negotiate what she considers foreign within herself? How does gender operate within her choice of gesture? How does the body forgive?
Laura Taler is a Romanian-born Canadian artist working across a range of media including dance, film, sound, sculpture and installation. Taler began her career as a contemporary dance choreographer before turning her attention to filmmaking and visual art. She has been a resident at the Banff Centre for the Arts, Centro Cultural Recoleta (Buenos Aires), Carleton Immersive Media Studio (Ottawa) and a fellow at the Institute for Cultural Inquiry (Berlin). Her work has been screened in festivals, special screenings and broadcast internationally. Awards include a Gold Hugo from the Chicago International Film Festival, the Best Experimental Documentary award from Hot Docs!, and Best of the Festival from New York’s Dance on Camera Festival. Her work is included in the publications Tension/Spannung (Turia+Kant, 2010), Revisiting Ephemera (Blue Medium Press, 2011) and Embodied Fantasies (Peter Lang Publishing, 2013). Taler holds an MFA from the University of Ottawa.