The University of Iowa

In the news: Eyes Closed Eyes Open to bring International Writing Program and Department of Dance together

February 26th, 2021

Photo of Graduate student; Juliet Remmers in “Dream Memory of the Future”, a film project directed by Associate Professor; Jennifer Kayle and co-created with graduate students in dance; Emmalee Hallinan, Mariko Ishikawa, Michael Landez and Juliet Remmers. This film features poetry by Wana Udobang. Contributed.

Abby McCusker, The Daily Iowan

The International Writing Program and the University of Iowa Department of Dance collaborate annually on a visual presentation and this year is no exception. The Eyes Closed Eyes Open event is a performance where graduate students from the Department of Dance and other collaborators, such as graduate students from the School of Music, take pieces written by current or former members of the IWP and turn them into visual presentations for an audience.

The performance is a part of the Art and the Pursuit of Social Justice series sponsored by Iowa Arts. IWP Director Christopher Merrill explained that the prompt for this collaboration, “when I close my eyes, I see the future / when I see the future, I close my eyes,” is designed for collaborators to think about past events and how they will shape the future.

“For us, we’re trying to look forward, recognizing that the Black Lives Matter Movement is very much an American phenomenon, but there are different ways of thinking about these issues of inclusivity in every country around the world,” Merrill said.