Awardee: Maureen Huskey

Performing Arts, 2002

Maureen Huskey (formerly Brennan) is an award-winning theater director based in Los Angeles since 2006. Her work reflects a strong commitment to pursuing a wide range of material, performance styles, cross-disciplinary collaborations and audience-performer relationships. Recent directing credits include Jennifer Barclay's The Exile of Petie Delarge for the REDCAT Now Festival and Son of Semele, Carl Hancock Rux's Poesia Negra at REDCAT and UCLA Live's Medea starring Annette Bening. Huskey's work as co-creator and director of the New York-based, site-specific theater group Red Dive from 1996-2006 garnered her a Bessie Award for "performance installation and new media" and support from the Franklin Furnace Foundation, The Greenwall Foundation, Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and The Heathcote Foundation, among others. Her independent theater projects in New York have been supported by New Dance Alliance, Brooklyn Arts Exchange and the Brooklyn Arts Council, among other organizations and residencies. Huskey is an artist leader in Creative Capital’s Professional Development Program.

Project: Peripheral City

_Peripheral City_ is a combined performance-installation and boat tour. Maureen Huskey (formally Brennan) collaborated with several local performance, video, and sound artists to create an episodic, multi-sensory, daytime public art event. Individual works were performed on pontoon boats, under bridges, and against building walls, with visuals projected against trees, earth, and other unexpected surfaces. _Peripheral City_ illuminates the environmental, social, and historical issues surrounding the Gowanus Canal, an industrial waterway that travels through several culturally diverse Brooklyn neighborhoods. The performances were juxtaposed with the narration of boat captain Bill Sheehan, an expert on the species renewal the canal was undergoing.

Collab: Red Dive

Red Dive was founded in 1996 by group of women working independently in theater and dance who sought to radically re-envision how and where performance is presented. They aimed to advance cross-disciplinary collaborations within a theatrical context and create a model of collective arts management. Inspired by happenings, public art and street theater experiments of earlier decades, their mission quickly evolved. Today, Red Dive is a New York vanguard in what is best described as site-specific, performance tours. They have transformed a school building, tenement building, Brooklyn’s Gowanus canal and many of New York’s lesser-known streets, neighborhoods, and public plazas into hosts of performance. Using performers as guides, Red Dive has led close to two-thousand audience members through sites animated by a crafted series of wide-ranging artistic works. Red Dive performance-tours have explored such themes as immigration, urban environmental renewal, post 9/11 re-developments and more. Appropriately, Red Dive was the first group to receive a BESSIE in the category of ‘new media and performance installation’ and they continue to garner attention with prestigious commissions, grants and critical acclaim.