Project: Sea of Common Catastrophe

Jeff Becker, working with video artist Courtney Egan and choreographer Jeffrey Gunshol, leads the ArtSpot ensemble in the creation of Sea of Common Catastrophe, a multi–disciplinary performance that explores resiliency and complicity in the face of rapid urban change.  Sea follows the journey of three companions as they wade through a continually changing landscape of upscaled living and chic restaurants built upon fragments of their past. Becker’s design and direction, Egan’s magical video projections, Gunshol’s liquid choreography, and ArtSpot Productions’s physical performance and original music create an immersive theatrical experience informed by stories from communities moving through social, economic and cultural change.

Awardee: Jeff Becker

Performing Arts, 2016

Jeff Becker is a director, designer and sculptor based in New Orleans. He received his BFA from Alfred University and MFA from Ohio State University. He co-founded CRISUS, a performance group that specialized in site-specific theater, utilizing innovative kinetic sets, sculpture and film. He has continued working in this way as an ensemble member of ArtSpot Productions, creating site-responsive devised theater. In 2011, Becker completed the NEA/TCG Career Development Program for Directors and Designers, which enabled him to travel to Russia, Europe and Africa to gain a global perspective on theater making. In 2014, he was a fellow at the MacDowell Artist Colony where he developed designs for his current project, Sea of Common Catastrophe. In 2015, he received a MAP Fund award for Vessels in collaboration with Rebecca Mwase. He is the founding member of Catapult, a collective theater laboratory in New Orleans dedicated to nurturing design-driven performance.