In the midst of all of our collective and individual uncertainty comes a spark of joy for PWNW as we welcome the newest cohort of Alembic Resident Artists: Maura Campbell-Balkits, Emily Jones + Hannah Krafcik, Marissa Rae Niederhauser, and maximiliano! We look forward to their presence in the studio starting (we hope) in June, to an enlivening and fruitful interchange of ideas, and to being able to share the results of their residency with our communities—be it live and/or at a virtual distance—at some point in 2021.

A huge thanks to all of the intrepid and talented applicants, and to panelists Nanda D’Agostinao, Allie Hankins, Jaleesa Johnston, and Noelle Stiles for their thoughtful, professional, compassionate review of all of the Alembic proposals.

INTRODUCING OUR ALEMBIC RESIDENT ARTISTS—COHORT #8

Maura Campbell-Balkits is a performer and video artist currently working in Portland, OR. She does a mixture of live and virtual comedy performances and has shown her video work in gallery spaces. Operating somewhere between the entertainment and art world, her work uses humor to deconstruct many different performance styles from TV talk show host to stand-up comedian. The body movement in her work is intertwined with the rhythms of her video editing–oscillating between fast then slow. It is a playful performance of glitches going in and out of consciousness that expresses the complex relationship between the human psyche and technology. 

She is one of the founding members of The Midnight Variety Hour: a multimedia TV-themed performance collective currently made up of Leah Wilmoth, Fern Wiley, Sean Christensen, and Jesse Carsten. The group has shown work at the CMG Improv Summit Festival (2018), received a grant from RACC to perform outside for their Night Lights series (2019), and also performed at multiple music and artist venues since the group was formed in 2017. In 2018, she received professional development grants from both the Oregon Arts Commission and Regional Arts and Culture Council to attend an artist residency in Ballyvaughan, Ireland, at the Burren College of Art. mauracb.com

My current performance work is a dissection and disruption of live comedic entertainment. For this residency, I will be focusing on the art of slapstick comedy. Using my body, props, and music, I will be creating a balancing act that meditates on slapstick’s constant struggle between perseverance, tension, relief, and failure. 


photo by Intisar Abioto at New Expressive Works

Emily Jones and Hannah Krafcik have been making performances and co-teaching together for the past three years. Their work emerges from a multiplicity of life practices including dance improvisation, forms of care labor, and a continued inquiry into power dynamics. With a critical lens toward their own intersecting and diverging femme identities and histories, Hannah and Emily are developing a queered ethics of making, performing, and co-teaching that is rooted in poetics and physical intimacy.

Emily and Hannah’s work has been presented at New Expressive Works (OR), Performance Works NW (OR), Art Klub NOLA (LA), and Pieter Performance Space (CA).
emilyannejones.com & hannahkrafcik.com

Our shared interest in neurology is a seed for our research during the Alembic residency. We are curious about the states and predispositions of both audience and performer nervous systems and the mysterious confluence of factors that reach across spacetimes to shape relationships between people in real time.

During this residency we are taking a hybrid approach to our work. While our previous performances have been primarily movement-based, we intend to work with self-made sound and video to create a multi-media performance.


Marissa Rae Niederhauser makes body-based art in dance, film, performance and installation. Her work, while always rooted in dance, often incorporates sound experiments, lofi technology stage elements and punk rock/performance art sensibilities. With special interest in self-invented rituals, folk magic, percussive sounds and the psychological and neurological systems’ influence on the performing body, her work often resonates with an underlining sexuality that is not necessarily titillating or easily appropriated. While only rarely overtly political, her work is always created through the lens of feminist analysis and tends towards a quality of atmospheric change, as if she brings a storm with her. Her works have been presented at On the Boards, Seattle Art Museum, Velocity Dance Center, Henry Art Gallery, and Seattle University in Washington state and at Judson Memorial Church, The Chocolate Factory/THROW and Ideas City Street Festival in NY, NY; at FECK:ART and Lucy Guerrin Inc in Melbourne, AU;  and K77 Studio, ADA Studio and Lake Studios in Berlin, DE. She is an award winning filmmaker with international screenings. She has a BFA in dance from Cornish College of the Arts. marissa-rae-n.com

Does history, our memory of it, define our identity? In a parallel timeline with a different history do we have a different identity?  What parts of our histories are remembered in our bodies and what part in our minds? How is our identity affected with radical shifts in perspective- as in age related dementia or catastrophic events? Using movement and the manipulation of prerecorded sound with analogue devices I will investigate what is fixed in the self and what is dependent on the environment. 


maximiliano (b.’89) is a conceptual artist currently working in performance, video, thought, zines, sculpture, curation, GIF and collaboration.  mythos as generative black thought. sampling & rupturing bodies & audio & video, forming a BLWVV aesthetic (black reclamation rococo). http://www.maxxmartinez.com

to craft a multimedia experience; including performance, video, audio, lighting, space.  with conceptual motivations to slow, to glitch embodiment & narrative. I am thinking about how performance lives beyond. 

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