EMILY JOHNSON is an artist who makes body-based work. A Bessie Award winning choreographer and Guggenheim Fellow in Choreography, she is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota and New York City. Originally from Alaska, she is of Yup’ik descent and since 1998 has created work that considers the experience of sensing and seeing performance. Her dances function as installations, engaging audiences within and through a space and environment—interacting with a place’s architecture, history, and role in community. Emily received a 2014 Doris Duke Artist Award and her work is supported by Creative Capital, Native Arts and Cultures Foundation, Map Fund, a Joyce Award, the McKnight Foundation, New England Foundation for the Arts, and The Doris Duke Residency to Build Demand for the Arts.
Emily is a current Mellon Choreography Fellow at Williams College and was a fellow at the Institute for Advanced Study at the University of Minnesota from 2013 – 2015. She received an inaugural 2014 fellowship at the Robert Rauschenberg Residency, a 2012 Headlands Center for the Arts and MacDowell residency. Emily is a Native Arts and Cultures Fellow (2011), a MANCC Choreographic Fellow (2009/2010/2012/2014/2016), a MAP Fund Grant recipient (2009/2010/2012/2013), and McKnight Fellow (2009, 2012). Emily and her collaborators received a 2012 New York Dance and Performance Bessie Award for Outstanding Performance for her work, The Thank-you Bar, at New York Live Arts. Her work, Niicugni, finished its ten city US tour in 2014 and her work, SHORE – which is equal parts feast, volunteerism, story, and performance – premiered in Minneapolis, MN in June 2014 and toured to New York City, Seattle, San Francisco, and Alaska through 2015. Her newest work, Then a Cunning Voice and a Night We Spend Gazing At Stars will premiere in Williamstown in 2017.