A Divine Trauma is a performance by Nicola Canavan which combines seemingly languid motion while seeking strength in femininity and purpose. For the duration of this action, the body follows its breath, precariously working its way forward with its heavily adorned flesh to its point of departure. The soul is cleansed as the carapace is released. This piece of work defines a change in perception and direction through stillness and control.

Encompassing movement akin to the style of Butoh traditions; Canavan’s journey is simultaneously metaphorical and literal, with the inherent struggle subtly observable. Canavan’s actions are played out in front of her audience who are invited into her intimate microcosm to bear witness to her transformation.

Nicola Canavan’s practice is rooted in action based performance and spans live work, documentations of its products and traces and the re-presentation of these in other forms. Canavan acknowledges and resists the sacred by entering the flesh and installing symbol through the manipulation of her body and through abstraction she pursues rituals that transcend the body.

Performed at City of Women festival, Ljubljana (Slovenia)
Filmed and Edited by Ursa Bonelli Potokar
2012

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