Transforming the Explorer riverboat into an immersive art experience, collaborators Celeste Neuhaus and Heidi Wiren Bartlett will lead the audience on a journey into the river and within themselves. Adorned with sparkling flags and illuminated by magic spells and live video projections, these events will be visible on the boat and alongside the river. Participants will observe microscopic plankton species essential to all river life, and be guided into an embodied relationship with the diverse ecosystem of Southwestern Pennsylvania. As the riverboat embarks, dancers will move as personified plankton, and as the riverboat returns to shore, a River Siren will sing on behalf of the water and the land at the confluence of the three rivers.
This project is made possible through a partnership with the Office for Public Art and Riverlife.
Heidi Wiren Bartlett is an interdisciplinary performance artist from the Great Plains. Her work is concerned with the portrayal, oppression, and subversive existence of women in America today. Illuminating the often overlooked and forgotten, she creates laborious action and still objects, blurring lines between public and private. She deconstructs notions of gender, race and corporeality through sculpture, photographs, moving image and action. She currently lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA and is a co-founder of Propelled Animals, a transdisciplinary arts and social justice collective.
Her studio is currently housed at the Brew House Association in Pittsburgh, PA and she is an artist-in-residence at High Concepts Labs in Chicago, IL and the Karl Stirner Arts Trail in Easton, PA.
Celeste Neuhaus is a witch who fuses art and magic. Her imagery, objects, performances and rituals support healing from the effects of living within capitalism and its intersecting systems of oppression. Chronic illness has acted as a constant catalyst for Celeste’s research into a spectrum of healing modalities, which continually shapes the forms of her practice. Through her service Conjure Creativity, she empowers people to align with the cycles of their unique creative processes.