M.F.A. in Interdisicplinary Arts and performance maker from Quebec, currently living in Vancouver BC, on the unceded territories of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh nations, Isabelle Kirouac develop dances, installations and interdisciplinary performances that often integrate participatory interactions. Isabelle explores the senses, body awareness, intimacy, interspecies relationships, the notion of ritual, the concepts of home, migration, liminality and their reflection on our ways of seeing.
After completing a Degree in Literature at Université du Québec À Montréal, and a College Diploma in Music and Humanities, Isabelle trained for many years in dance improvisation, Contact Improvisation, release technique, somatics, physical theater, butoh, performance art, vertical dance and acrobatic stilts.
Over the last years, Isabelle created several original interdisciplinary performance works and toured across Canada, the USA, Mexico, Colombia and Europe. She collaborated/performed in the work of Emmanuel Jouthe/Danse Carpe Diem (Montreal), Emmalena Fredriksson/Arash Khakpour (Vancouver), Foolish Operations (Vancouver), the improvisation collective Mutual Futures (Vancouver), Theatre Junction (Calgary), La Pocha Nostra (Mexico/USA), Body Research (USA), Felix Ruckert (Germany), amongst others. She also has been an active member of The Carpetbag Brigade Physical Theatre (San Francisco), best known for its cutting-edge acrobatic stilts drama for seven years. Isabelle is a community engaged facilitator, working with ArtStarts Artists in Schools, Still Moon Performance Arts Society and other art organizations. She teaches movement classes and Contact Improvisation locally and abroad. She taught at numerous venues and festivals, including The Dance Centre/Working Class (Vancouver), Salt Spring Island Contact Improvisation Summer Plunge, Elsewhere Canadian International Dance Festival (Lasqueti Island), the Fuertevetura Contact Improvisation Festival (Canary Islands), Inesperadamente International Dance Encounter (Spain), Israeli Contact Improvisation Festival (Israel), Woman’s community centres in Palestine, etc. Her work has been supported by Canada Arts Council, BC Arts Council, Conseil des Arts et des Lettres du Québec, Offices Internationaux de la Jeunesse du Québec, Fonds de soutien aux initiatives de création et de diffusion professionnelles de la MRC d’Arthabaska, Simon Fraser University Fellowships and Awards and the Elsie Jang Award. She won the Joana Marrata Award for her duet Habitats in collaboration with Nayana Fielkov.
Isabelle is currently researching the intersection between the world of fungi and somatic practices, social choreography and immersive experiences in collaboration with mycologist and visual artist Willoughby Arevalo. Most recently, the duo conducted research on art and mycology as artist in residence at the Guapamacàtaro Art and Ecology Centre in Michoacán (Mexico). Following this residency, they conducted an experiential art and fungi walk in the Grandview-Woodland neighborhood of Vancouver, and designed and facilitated a two-years art and fungi program for at-risk youth at Mountainside Secondary in collaboration with North Van Arts. They are currently the artists in residence at Kitsilano Community Centre through the Artists in Communities Program, in collaboraiton with Vancouver Parks Board.
Past work inspired by the living systems around us includes Birds on Parade, a large-scale community engaged project inspired by local birds and leading to a parade opening the 2018 International Ornithological Congress, Lost & Found: Stories of Still Creek, a site-specific interdisciplinary performance walk through Renfrew Ravine exploring its landscape and stories, in collaboration with Still Moon Arts Society and Body Research’s meditative dance film Presence and Pipelines, denouncing the impact of gas pipeline proposals in the Great Bear Rainforest.
Isabelle occasionally plays music in the experimental band Medecine Baul (USA). As part of the musical duo Body Builders, she composed and performed the soundscape of the performance The Robes of St-Anne, directed by Circus Stella in collaboration with the Carpetbag Brigade, which was toured across Quebec and New Brunswick. She plays classical guitar, diatonic accordion and other unclassified sound devices.
Isabelle is the proud mother of Uma Echo.