The dance film On Following, Chapter 1: Negotiating Embrace is the first in a trilogy of films by dancer Nadia Oussenko and cinematographer Daniel Kullman. In Chapter 1, Oussenko is introduced to Argentine Tango by instructor Nicole Gifford and journeys to overcome her insecurities and to follow the close embrace of the dance with her body.
Oussenko aims to capture universal and personal struggles on film, embodying the pitfalls, screw ups, vulnerabilities, and successes that are part of learning a new dance or a new relationship. By listening, letting go, and learning to follow through partnered dance, Oussenko challenges her identity and skill as a dancer.
Sponsorship by High Concept Labs allows Oussenko space to create and film the first chapter of On Following, garner feedback and support from fellow Sponsored Artists, and prepare the film for showing in the dance film festival CONNECT.
Nadia Oussenko is a choreographer, filmmaker, photographer, and dance educator. She received her MFA in Dance at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2005 and was a Chicago Dancemakers Forum Lab Artist in 2008-2009. Her screen dances provide a visceral experience for her viewers, directing her viewers’ attention and drawing them into closer proximity and greater intimacy with the moving body. Oussenko’s works have been screened at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Dance on Camera Festival in New York, Music Box Theatre and Chicago Filmmakers in Chicago, ADF Dancing for the Camera Festival of Video and Dance, The San Francisco Dance Film Festival, and Moves International Festival of Movement on Screen in Manchester, England.
Her interest in photography and choreography began in graduate school. She participated in a Dance for Camera workshop mentored by Ellen Bromberg in Victoria, BC, which helped integrate her interests and foster her early artistic goals. In 2007, while documenting dancemaker Molly Shanahan for the documentary My Name is a Blackbird, Oussenko began to understand the intricate relationship between dancer and hand-held camera. Oussenko was also a Fellow at “Sound and Movement: Embodied Sound for the Screen” workshop in Cape Charles, VA with award-winning Choreographer Noemi Lafrance. Oussenko currently teaches ballroom with Dancing with Class, an children’s outreach program.