STRANGE NATURE: A world-building, material intimacies, and costuming module for performance with Hana van der Kolk and Lea Kieffer


Hana van der Kolk


Hana van der Kolk is a dancer, performer, educator, somatic/Internal Family Systems and sexuality coach, experimental media maker, writer, and facilitator of community events and spaces. Hana also makes objects and environments. All these activities are grounded in the body/dancing, which she sees as conduits for knowing/unknowing what is here and now, for remembering intimacy at many proximities. They embrace the uncanny, the collaborative, the messy, the slow, and the inadequate in that process, and often work with found materials in a practice they call “orphan collaging.” 

Hana is currently based on Mohican land (Troy, NY) where he is a co-organizer of FlagSSS Day, threw the queer dance party Polly and worked with Troy Bike Rescue for five years, and is nearing the end of a practice-based art PhD at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute focused on creative, embodied technologies for re-enchantment. Hana also completed an MFA in Dance at UCLA, where they worked with Susan Foster, Simone Forti, Vic Marks, and Dan Froot. 

Hana has shared work at Polly (Troy, NY), Collar Works (Troy, NY), Woodstock Artist’s Association and Museum (Woodstock, NY), Williams College Museum of Art (Williamstown, MA), REDCAT (Los Angeles), Joan Gallery (Los Angeles), Machine Project (Los Angeles), Hammer Museum (Los Angeles), The Tang Museum (Saratoga Springs, NY), Space Gallery (Portland, ME), Boston Center for the Arts (Boston, MA), Jacuzzi (Amsterdam, NL), Zagreb Dance Center (Zagreb, CR), Turteatern (Stockholm, SW), Kenuti Gildi Saal (Tallinn, Estonia), and elsewhere. They have been on the faculty of Williams College, The School for New Dance Development (Amsterdam, NL), and Marlboro College and have guest taught in numerous universities, art schools, healing and community centers, forests, parks and private homes. 

Some of Hana’s most important teachers include Deborah Hay, whose work they learned and adapted from 2000-2007, Barbara Carrellas, with whom they became a certified Urban Tantra practitioner in 2021, and her many collaborators and co-conspirators including Erica Dawn Lyle, Julia Handschuh, taisha paggett, Tomislav Feller, Lailye Weidman, Senem Pirler, Joan Kelsey, Erin Sickler, Kamryn Wolf, Emily Mast, Angela Beallor, Asher Woodworth, Jason Martin, margit galanter, Sara Jane Stoner, and Nikola Knežević. Hana loves her dog, friends, the forest and all shades of pink and gold.  

Lea Kieffer


Lea Kieffer is a French, Berlin based performer, dance artist, and costume/clothing maker. Her work explores processes of transformation and the dialogue between imagination and physicality through interweaving dance, craftsmanship, bodywork and storytelling into hybrid and transdisciplinary formats. Her dance is influenced by a background in sports and a postmodern dance education based on improvisation, especially contact improvisation and somatic practices. She constructs scenographies, daily and stage costumes out found, gathered, and recycled materials. She sees this process as a humans-non-human entities collaboration that aims to shift object/subject power dynamics towards coexistence and acknowledgment of a mutual influence. All of her practices are rooted in developing new narratives for the body and for movement with a specific inspiration from science fiction, and action movies and B-rated movies. 

Over the years she has built and developed her solo practice which manifests in the solo performance MELUZINE THE COSMIC MERMAID, STARDUST, and the hybrid workshop/performance concept SCI FI ANATOMY (SFA) : a hybrid performance-workshop that creates dialogue between the matter of the body and the sea of our thoughts. 

Since 2012, she has created with partner of crimes Rocio Marano, under the identity of Los(t) Ninjas, multimedia performances ( “Matter of Blood”,” Blind Date (Literally)”, workshops “Los(t) Ninjas Practice”. In the last year, she worked as performer and/or costume maker with Frida Giulia Franceschini, Lee Meir & André Lewski, Jared Gradinger & Angela Schubot, Jeremy Shaw, Isabel Lewis, K.A.U. & Wdowik, Jule Flierl, Stephanie Auberville among others.




To me, costumes and scenographies are way more than 'pieces of fabric'. They are rather performers on their own, able to animate things and become animated.  They are an extra layer of matter on the matter of our physical body, extensions that transform the physicality and performativity of the one that wears it. They have stories to tell, and they affect the way we are used to tell stories. This is a collaboration between humans and non-human entities that aims to shift the power object/subject dynamics towards coexistence and acknowledgment of a mutual influence.