Still from Erin Malley's Quake
Daria Kaufman is a performer/choreographer working at the intersection of dance, theater, video, and installation. Though formally trained, her work takes an experimental approach, plumbing the edges of genres to deconstruct notions of perception, femininity, and communication. She is interested in the slippery meanings that underlie everyday actions, and the ways in which art and performance can lay these bare.
Since 2013, Kaufman has created a series of solo works exploring female persona and the tools we use to shape desire. She is a frequent collaborator with StratoFyzika - a Berlin-based interactive, audiovisual performance collective that creates immersive works through a hybrid of new media, dance, and spatial soundscapes. Though currently based in the US, she lived and worked in Lisbon (Portugal) for five years, where she studied with and gained influence from contemporary performance makers such as João Fiadeiro, Jonathan Burrows, Vitor Ruiz, and Aitana Cordero. She is an associated artist under Bazen Productions, based in Lisbon.
Kaufman's original works have been presented throughout Europe and the San Francisco Bay Area, at venues and festivals including: Curtas de Dança, in scope of Festival Dias de Dança (Porto/PT), Escola Superior de Dança (Lisbon/PT), Rua das Gaivotas 6, in scope of Encontro Bianual de Artes Performativas - (Re)union 2018 (Lisbon), Biblioteca de Marvila (Lisbon), Zaratan Contemporary Art Gallery (Lisbon), ODC Theater (SF), Cutting Ball Theater (SF), Joe Goode Annex (SF), NOHspace (SF), SAFEHouse Arts (SF), Mills College (Oakland), The Milkbar (Oakland), and on KQED Spark TV (SF Bay Area). Her premiere dance film Forge screened at the Roxie Theater in San Francisco, KILL ALL Festivals (Portland), and was an Official Selection of the 2013 Tiny Dance Film Festival (SF). With StratoFyzika, Kaufman has performed at B-Seite Festival (Mannheim/DE), UferStudios (Berlin/DE), and Festival Atalaia Artes Performativas (Aljustrel/PT). "Holding it together" - a performance installation co-created with performer/choreographer Sezen Tonguz - was performed at Festival Cidade PreOcupada (Montemor-o-Novo/PT), Atelier Concorde (Lisbon), and received Portuguese funding to tour to Mills College.
In 2015, Kaufman was nominated for an Isadora Duncan Dance Award (the "Izzie") for Individual Performance. Her work has been supported by the Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, GDA Foundation, European Cultural Foundation, Zellerbach Family Foundation, and numerous individual donors. In addition, her projects have been awarded Artist-in-Residencies throughout Europe and the SF Bay Area, including Atelier Concorde, DeVIR CApa (Faro/PT), ÇATI Dans (Istanbul/TU), Shawl-Anderson Dance Center (Oakland), the Milkbar (Oakland), Subterranean Arthouse (Berkeley), and the Foundry (Berkeley). As a contemporary dancer, she has performed and collaborated with a diverse range of companies and choreographers, including Alma Esperanza Cunningham Movement, Erin Malley, Deborah Karp Dance Projects, Aura Fischbeck Dance, The Thick Rich Ones, Jose Navarrete and Debby Kajiyama (NAKA Dance Theater), and Amy Lewis.
In Portugal, Kaufman taught at Escola Superior de Dança, Lisbon's leading, professional training institute for contemporary dance. She regularly taught at the Subterranean Arthouse in Berkeley from 2012-2014. She has given master classes and/or guest lectures at Belas Artes - Universidade de Lisboa, the University of California at Berkeley (Theater, Dance, and Performance Studies Department), Mills College (Dance Department), Danceworx Mumbai (India), and ÇATI Dans. She assisted lecturer Jenefer Johnson in three separate dance theory courses at UC Berkeley. Her writings on dance have been published on Baywatch (a project of the UC Berkeley Dance Studies Working Group), StanceOnDance.com, and the Examiner.