Statement by Co-Founder Daria Halprin
There is an essential connection between art and life that can facilitate healing and change. We are interested in a new aesthetic that reflects the here and now of peoples’ authentic life experiences, rather than the beauty of a specific dance form or technique. For us, it is our real life experiences that feed our art, and our art that informs the real issues in our lives.
The Tamalpa Life/Art Process® is an integrated approach that explores the wisdom of the body as expressed through movement, dance, and imagination. We use artistic processes and media to explore and deepen our relationship to psychological life, to social issues, and to creativity itself.
The foundation of the Tamalpa Art/Life Process is based on a view of the body and movement. The body holds our entire life experience. We understand movement as the body’s primary language. For us, movement is synonymous with life. Movement is personality and soul made visible, and dance is body, feelings, and imagination in motion. We believe that movement/dance is a way for all people to live a more embodied and creative life – one that fosters healing and social transformation. Movement and dance are ways to express the full range of human emotion and to connect, deeply and authentically, to our truest selves. This process is based on the following principles.
- Our bodies are vehicles of awareness.
- There is a relationship and interplay between the physical body, emotions, and mental/imaginal realms.
- Body sensations, postures, and gestures reflect our history, our culture, and our current ways of being.
- When we engage in expressive movement, dance, and the expressive arts, the ongoing themes and patterns from our lives are revealed.
- When we work on our art (a dance, drawing, poem, song, or performance), we are also working on something in our lives.
- The symbols we create in our art contain valuable messages which speak to the circumstances of our lives.
- The ways we work as artists teach us about the ways we relate to ourselves, others, and the world.
- When we enact positive visions through our art, we create images and models that can become guiding forces in our lives.
- It is in our art that we find expression for that which disturbs us and for that which we want to celebrate.
- As we learn how to work with the principles of creativity and the practice of the arts, we are able to apply what we learn to all aspects of our lives.