[2018] PUSH Migration Lab interviews Amalia Herrera

| Has working with fellow artists exposed you to any new ideas and/or artistic practice that you had not considered before?

Yes. I had worked for young audiences in schools, educational institutions where theater and dance is considered a tool for the personal, emotional and social development of the child, so the focus is almost always more didactic than artistic. I liked the exchange with artists from different countries, areas, experiences to shake mine and think about how our audiences receive our work

| Thinking of the main theme for the Lab (i.e. migration), to what extent has the project allowed you to challenge or change your own thinking in this area? And have you been surprised by the way your thinking in relation to this theme has changed?

I consider myself a migrant artist, since the question of “Where is our home?”. It was a shock to all of us who participated in the Lab and where we felt our home having changed our country, city, place of birth. Yes I was surprised to hear the large number of children who have migrated, the strength and resilience they develop in their migration experience and the great opportunity to transform this experience in creativity, freedom, solidarity.

| How will you use your learning/new thinking around migration going forward?  How, if at all, will it impact on your future work/practice? And how, if at all, will you be able to use it to influence or impact others?

Yes I would like to use it in the next issue of a single that I am developing, that deals with where we feel we develop roots, or if these roots are mobile like plants that have roots in water, in constant motion. I would like to sensitize people about the diversity of humanity that we are, and that only a hug, gaze connects us with that humanity. Culture enriches us, as the diversity of foods that nourish us, is similar to what we learn and enrich ourselves about cultures. But it is not always so well accepted, and move this thought of wanting to generalize, dominate, colonize from the point of view of who has more resources or forces to impose what he considers “his truth”. I think it’s as mobile as water.

| Thinking back over the Lab, what have been the main strengths or the ‘high points’ of taking part in the Lab?

The group of people, sensitivity to the subject, the guidance of Veronica with great delicacy, care, attention and professionalism towards our eyes, points of view. I felt a lot of respect and openness from the group as well as from the organizers of the Lab.

| And, what, if anything, have been the main weaknesses or the ‘low points’ of the Lab?

Honestly, I did not feel any discomfort, or lack of anything. We worked with children where we could create our motivations to work and plan activities as a group, we received lectures on the subject, we went together to the cinema. We were all the time of the Lab involved with the work.

| If you had one piece of advice for the organisers of future Labs, what would it be?

Maybe participating in a festival program, being able to give a workshop or show a work in process for feedback and debate with the public can be an interesting idea.

| All things considered, what, would you say, was the main learning point for you as an artist over that week?  What is the main thing you will take away from the Lab?

The strength, confidence, solidarity and artistic potential of working in a group with a respectful and professional leadership.

| Is there anything else that you would like to say about the migration Lab, that I have not given you a chance to say?

I would like to have the opportunity to develop ideas, potential works that we glimpse of those 10 days, and have the opportunity to meet more times. That is, the possibility of continuing the work begun and developing it in a work together, which could be a work, a show-class, a debate, a workshop. A job that we can follow in time after receiving this rich stimulus. Thank you.

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