Improvisational, multimedia performance art comes to FAB Gallery

Artist Stephanie Patsula blends live performance with digital photography, video and sound

Erik Einsiedel - 23 November 2020

Improvisational performance, photography, sculpture and video are just some of the elements found in artist and MFA candidate Stephanie Patsula’s latest exhibit. Her self-titled show runs November 24 - 27, 2020 in FAB Gallery and is viewable by appointment only.

With four distinct installation spaces for audiences to explore, Patsula’s exhibit showcases an eclectic variety of sights. Some of the experiences include a sculpture made from 20 individual photos, green screen video effects featuring Patsula’s body as water, and live, improvised performances involving instruments made from blown glass, water and microphone effects.

Over the course of her exhibit, Patsula will perform a series of live performances. Audiences may attend in small groups by appointment only, and with limited space for COVID-19 safety.

One of those performances, The Long Goodbye, gives subtle clues about Patsula’s earlier life. She describes The Long Goodbye as a “durational performance.” This means that the performance focuses on the passage of long periods of time.

“I allow the materials to tell me when the performance is over,” Patsula says. “The ‘clock’ for The Long Goodbye is jars of snow — when they’ve melted down, that’s when the performance is over.”

Patsula had previously performed The Long Goodbye prior to the COVID-19 lockdown to an audience of over 20 people. That original iteration lasted almost seven hours.

Her other live performance, Sympathetic Resonance, is an improvised sound piece. Patsula worked with glass blower Leah Kudel to create instruments fitted exactly to her body. Filling them with water, she attaches contact microphones to each one, creating a live sound bath for audiences to experience.

“Sympathetic resonance in music terminology is about one thing vibrating at a certain frequency, and if it’s close enough to something else that can carry that same resonance, it’ll start vibrating sympathetically,” she describes. “That’s something I’ve constantly experienced while talking to people, especially now with the present state of the world. There’s this renewed ‘extension of self to others’ because of this historic moment we’re in.”

Audiences can also experience Patsula’s experimentation with Augmented Reality. Earlier this year, while doing an artist residency with Mile Zero Dance, Patsula worked with artist Alyssa Nider to create a dance piece that places Patsula inside a digital space. Based on a video capture, audiences will see video feeds from multiple monitors interacting with each other.

This blend of live performance, digital photography, video installation and sound exploration will be available for audiences to experience in FAB Gallery from November 24 - 27, 2020. Visit the official show page for more information and to book your visit.

Live performances at FAB Gallery (by appointment only):

The Long Goodbye
November 26, 2020
1:00 p.m. MST 

Sympathetic Resonances
November 27, 2020
5:30 p.m. MST
Also to be live-streamed at: