Dr. Angela Rawlings is a Canadian-Icelandic interdisciplinary artist-researcher who works with languages as dominant exploratory material. Their practice seeks and interrogates relationality between bodies—be they human, more-than-human, other-than, non. Meditating on languages as inescapable lenses of human engagement, Rawlings’ methods over the past twenty years have included sensorial poetries, vocal and contact improvisation, theatre of the rural, and conversations with landscapes.
Rawlings has an extensive background in solo and group performance and exhibition. They have performed throughout North America, Europe, and Australia at festivals including Roskilde Festival (Denmark), Oslo International Poetry Festival (Norway), and Tectonics Music Festival (Iceland, Scotland). Their work has been exhibited internationally at venues including Dedee Shattuck Gallery (USA), Hafnarborg (Iceland), Hanstholm Fyr (Denmark), and Kunsthall Trondheim (Norway).
Rawlings’ books include Wide Slumber for Lepidopterists (Coach House Books, 2006), Gibber (online, 2012), o w n (CUE BOOKS, 2015), si tu (MaMa Multimedijalni Institut, 2017), and Sound of Mull (Laboratory for Aesthetics and Ecology, 2019). Their book Wide Slumber was adapted for music theatre by Valgeir Sigurðsson and VaVaVoom in 2014. Their libretti include Að Hvala (for José Luis Anderson, 2021-3), Bodiless (for Gabrielle Herbst, 2014), and Longitude (for Davíð Brynjar Franzson, 2014). Rawlings’ Áfall / Trauma was shortlisted for the Leslie Scalapino Award for Innovative Women Playwrights (2013).
Rawlings received their PhD from the University of Glasgow where they researched how to perform geochronology in the Anthropocene. In 2021-22, they researched becoming-with whales in the climate crisis as a postdoctoral fellow with H.M. Queen Margrethe’s and Vigdís Finnbogadóttir’s Interdisciplinary Research Centre on Ocean, Climate, and Society. In 2022, Rawlings co-curated the SPHERE Festival for the Canadian National Arts Centre's Orchestra in partnership with the Canadian Museum of Nature, Royal Danish Library, and Nordic Bridges. They teach at the Iceland University of the Arts in the MA for Performing Arts and MA in Music (New Audiences and Innovative Practices) programs.
Iceland University of the Arts (IUA),