Dana Sanchez Graham
My name is Dana, and I am a performance artist currently living and based in Berlin. The name Dana, pronounced ‘dah-nah’, is a word in Pali that is used to describe a particular kind of generosity that exists purely and without expectation. I’ve only recently come to understand that the meaning of my name has, in some ways, predetermined the course of my life.
Born and raised on both sides of the US-Mexico border in the Rio Grande Valley, my work in the world is that of exploring fronteriza identity and traversing the esoteric and liminal spaces of dispossession, geography, ritual, the subconcious, and violence that exists within their in-betweens.
My work typically includes the use of organic materials such as clay, water, and seeds, and takes the moving body as a point of departure. There's a brutal lucidity that I invite people to experience. My work strives to give shape to this feeling of "stuck-ness" that every person feels when they reach the edge of a border in the hopes that they can then realize this "stuck-ness" and break free. That is the greatest gift I can offer others through my being: the option to break free.
Part 1: ***
A site specific performance turned visual poem that captures a moment in which someone searches for the people they've carried on their back their entire life, who are no longer here. You have them too. They are your ancestors and they are simultaneously all around and nowhere to be found.
Part 2: LEJANIA
Hoy salí a caminar y me puse a cantar:
“Ay, me da, qué tristeza que me da
Me da, me da la lejanía
qué tristeza que me da
Estar tan lejos de la tierra mía”
Today I went for a walk and I began to sing:
"Oh, how it makes me, how sad it makes me
Oh how it gives me, how it gives me such homesickness
How sad it makes me
To be so far from my land"
Content warning: A big loud sound at one moment.