Postcard from Berlin

Posted on February 28, 2022

Bath Spa’s GALA Outreach Fund supported Professor Thomas Kampe, Co-director of CCRG at Bath Spa University and Co-curator of Body IQ Festival 2021 in Berlin:

“I am delighted about the Bath Spa GALA Outreach Award that I and the Creative Corporealities Research Group (CCRG) received to support the hosting of Body IQ Festival 2021 Berlin. The funding supported my travel to, and accommodation in, Berlin during November 2021 to co-host Body IQ Festival as a knowledge exchange event in collaboration with Somatische Akademie Berlin.

“The international ‘Body IQ Festival 2021 – Bodies of Cultures, Communities and Places’ hosted around 130 presenters from around the globe, amongst them six scholars/artists from University of Witwatersrand, South Africa . The three-day live and online festival offered workshops, talks, panel-discussions and performances, and aimed to address questions of embodied recovery & revisioning in the context of global social & ecological crises and changes. It offered a forum for practice exchange, debate, networking, application and articulation of potential for somatic-activisms into a diverse range of cultural and social environments. Participating artist-scholars from GALA network partner University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) included:
• Kamogelo Molobye: lecturer in movement studies & choreography at Wits who gave a performance lecture entitled ‘Waistline: Masculinities in Motion towards Embodied Practices of Vulnerability’:
• Nobantu Shabangu: writer/performer and MA Drama for Life student who gave a performance lecture entitled ‘Eclipsed Evolution’:
• Oladele Ayorinde: a ‘THInK’ (Transforming the Humanities through Interdisciplinary Knowledge) Doctoral Fellow at the Wits School of Arts (WSOA) who gave a presentation entitled ‘Re-Thinking Social Somatics: Perspectives on Music-Centred ‘Community Somatics’ in South Africa’:
• Bev Butkow: MFA student on a scholarship from Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, who gave a presentation on ‘Embodied-Entanglements/Entangled-Embodiments’–entangled-embodiments

“The Bath Spa connection to Wits was developed through conversations with staff of their ‘Drama for Life’ programme who publicized the event widely. The Bath Spa/Wits GALA connection was vital for the festival to extend its reach towards dialogues with participants from Global South communities, as part of the Social Justice agenda of the festival. This enabled us to attract presenters and participants from various African countries and contexts, including South Africa, Rwanda and Kenya.

“It was a delight to host the work of the Wits artist/scholars for the festival; I also communicated with Nobantu Shabangu and Oladele Ayorinde about the possibility of presenting their work through a recorded podcast ‘Somatic Radio’ programme, hosted by Austrian partner ‘Somatic Trainings’ as part of Body IQ festival. An interview with Nobantu about their socially transformative arts practice is published at Spotify

“It was also brilliant for CCRG to have the support from Bath Spa’s GALA Outreach Award – this will enable us to host online research talks with our Bursary fellows from Canada and India in spring 2022, and with the Body IQ presenters from Wits in autumn 2022.”

Prof. Thomas Kampe
Co-director of CCRG at Bath Spa University; Co-curator of Body IQ Festival 2021