Usha is an interdisciplinary artist working across health, ecology and education using visual arts, movement, film and creative mentoring practices. Based in Nottingham and coming from a textiles background, she uses CAP as part of an embodied inquiry that facilitates both artistic process and nourishes her personal well being.
In this interview she describes her re-encounter with CAP at Dance4 in December 2019 and the ways in which she is integrating it’s facets to reflect on, develop and deepen her practice in new ways.
Usha opens up for us the process of developing an installation for her film ‘Land of Aprons’ as part of Plas Bodfa Unus- multorum 2020 exhibition and discusses how CAP has enabled self-nurturing in response to the experiences of Covid 19. She describes not-knowingness and coming into connection, time and care and how CAP is like having an ally in the studio especially when working solo.
Through her work with children in care, Usha uses CAP as a reflective practitioner tool. She feels strongly about counteracting the ‘flat-packing’ of education in order to honour our multiple intelligences. She uses CAP to be able to do this, articulating it as a way to play and notice and receive ourselves.
Recently a chance conversation about CAP led to a spontaneous session with her Niece, Ellen Mahenthiralingam, in the grounds of YSP. This young person was new to such practices but found it a fascinating way to generate a sense of freedom in herself – especially in recognising her tendency to ‘delve’ and get stuck. A familiar “weighted” feeling arose for her but by the end of experiencing the facets, it had dissolved and she felt lighter and at ease.
This encounter rekindled Ellen’s desire to be more creative and brought her closer to her aspirations to be a writer. Eager to explore more, they had planned further sessions whilst Usha was in Residency at Dance 4 Autumn 2020. Ellen said; “I’m looking forward to navigating again – it’s really good to have the time to be curious in this organic way and just see what happens”