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GESEL MASON is Artistic Director for Gesel Mason Performance Projects and Associate Professor of Dance at the University of Texas at Austin. She was a company member of Liz Lerman Dance Exchange and Ralph Lemon/Cross Performance Projects.

For over 20 years, Mason has supported and celebrated the contributions of African American artists and communities. Her solo performance project, NO BOUNDARIES: Dancing the Visions of Contemporary Black Choreographers, featured the work of Kyle Abraham, Robert Battle, Rennie Harris, Dianne McIntyre, Donald McKayle, Bebe Miller, David Rousséve, Reggie Wilson, Andrea E. Woods Valdéz, and Jawole Willa Jo Zollar. The project was recently awarded a NEH Digital Humanities Advancement Grant to create an innovative online archive to further illuminate the unique legacies and aesthetics of these choreographers.

In her own work, Mason utilizes dance, theater, humor, and storytelling to bring visibility to voices unheard, situations neglected, or perspectives considered taboo. Her current choreographic project Yes, And, centers an expansive vision of Black womanhood as the operating force in the creative process. It is a series of performance events activated by the question: “Who would you be and what would you do if, as a Black woman, you had nothing to worry about?” The project is supported by the National Performance Network and New England Foundation for the Arts.

A 2019 Rauschenburg Artist in Residence, her work has been supported by the National Endowment for the Arts, John F. Kennedy Center, American Dance Festival, Bates Dance Festival, the International Association of Blacks in Dance, Map Fund, Whiting Foundation, and numerous colleges and universities.

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