socially-engaged artist + dancer | performance designer | workshop facilitator

Interdisciplinary creative, based in Kent and London, with a playful, meditative practice working with a unique blend of participatory art, performance, installation, Happenings and workshops. These are infused with a range of multi-sensory mediums that inspire each other like a dance in site-specific settings: sculpture, found objects, set design, improvisation, dance and movement, collage, drawing, printmaking, photography, video, text, poetic spoken word, sound and scents.

Intrigued by mindful curiosity in the everyday, my artworks respond and transform spaces with embodied experiences and tactile creations to alter peoples’ perceptions and improve well-being. I think a lot about the psychology of making, the importance of play for all and our relationship with objects. Celebrating the weird, the random and the potential for performance in ordinary environments. Often my work is spontaneous and comes from observation. That distinctive feeling of euphoria from an unexpected outcome is just delicious.

As a performer, I see myself as a combination of an ‘Introverted Performance Artist’ and ‘Kate Bush the Organised Dancer’, using performance to add another layer of experience. I have been dancing from a young age in Ballet, Tap, Modern Jazz and Lyrical and more recently in Contemporary, Latin and Swing.

I have an MA in Performance Design & Practice from University of the Arts London: Central Saint Martins, a BA in Fine Art from Kingston School of Art and a Level 3 Foundation Diploma in Art & Design from University for the Creative Arts, Canterbury. I have produced work across Kent, London, France, Italy and Berlin on individual and collaborative projects.

“Onward and Upward Mobile-ity with the Arts— or the projection of Elly plus the rebirth of Kate Bush as Staircase Stars. Including marmalading, hula hooping, Funny Facing and cardboard interfacing. Curiously!”

Scott Ewing (2020)

© Elly Rutherford 2022