The Float Lab

The Heartbeat of Invisible Rivers

Invisible Rivers is a project of The Land Memory Bank and Mondo Bizarro and Jeff Becker that uses music, theater, visual art and boat-building to respond to our region’s interconnected struggles against coastal land loss, environmental racism and displacement. We are physically modeling ideas about how we can learn to live with fluctuation, to live with uncertainty, and to live in symbiosis with our increasingly watery world.

On View
Saturday Oct 1, 2022
Float Lab 3 Credit Bruce France
Float Lab Picture 1 Credit Bruce France

The creative team for Invisible Rivers has been making art about the environmental crisis we face in Southeast Louisiana for nearly two decades. The Land Memory Bank is led by Monique Verdin. Monique is a citizen and former councilwoman of South Louisiana’s United Houma Nation and is a part of the Another Gulf Is Possible Collaborative’s core leadership circle of brown (indigenous, latinx and desi) women. She has intimately documented the complex interconnectedness of environment, economics, culture, climate and change in southeast Louisiana for decades. Her indigenous Houma relatives and their ways of life at the ends of the bayous, in the heart of America’s Mississippi River Delta, have been the primary focus of her storytelling practice.

Jeff Becker is a designer, director and sculptor who specializes in audience interactive performances and outdoor spectacles. His work focuses on issues surrounding racism, abuse of power and environmental justice. He has toured extensively nationally and abroad and is the recipient of numerous awards and grants. Jeff is the co-founder of Catapult, a performance laboratory in New Orleans dedicated to the development of original theater and innovative design.

Mondo Bizarro is a New Orleans-based company led by Artistic Director Nick Slie. Mondo Bizarro has been creating interdisciplinary art and fostering creative partnerships in local, national and international communities for twenty years. Our creative endeavors range from ensemble performances to large-scale community festivals, from innovative digital storytelling projects to site-responsive productions. As artists of place, our journeys begin and end in New Orleans: we tour to embolden our efforts here. Our creations embody the urgency of our desire to listen to our land and culture, develop allies in collective action, and provide a platform for using art as a tool to understand what makes us commonly human and individually unique.

About The Float Lab
Monique Verdin
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Nick Slie
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Jeff Becker
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Curatorial Statement
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Programming and Exhibitions at the Contemporary Arts Center, New Orleans are made possible through generous support from: The Andrew Mellon Foundation; Art for Justice Fund, a sponsored project of Rockefeller Philanthropy Advisors; The Helis Foundation, the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Foundation; The Welch Foundation; The RosaMary Foundation; Greater New Orleans Foundation; National Performance Network; New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Foundation; CAC President’s Council members: Valerie Besthoff, Susan & Ralph Brennan, Dathel & Thomas Coleman, Robyn Dunn Schwarz and Andrew Schwarz, Aimée & Michael Siegel, Staci Rosenberg, Jane B. & Rodney Steiner, MK Wegman & Lisa Mount, Dian & Tom Winingder; and CAC Silver Circle members: Virginia Besthoff & Nancy Aronson, Jessica Bride & Nick Mayor, Jane Cooper & Bob Heaps, Leslie & Jonathan Fawer, John Foley, Tina Freeman & Philip Woollam, Gina Monette, Marcy H. Monrose Curtis & Charles Curtis, Greg Montgomery, Barbara & Biff Motley, Michael Schneider, Sharon SIlvers, Jane & I. William Sizeler, and Gretchen & Scott R. Wheaton. We are also grateful for the generous in-kind support from The Domain Companies; Corporate Realty; and Old No. 77 Hotel and Chandlery; as well as our community partners: Mr. Wolf; Loyola University; Dancing Grounds; Prospect New Orleans; Voice of the Experienced; and Women with a Vision.

Sydney and Walda Besthoff Foundation
The Welch Foundation
RosaMary Foundation
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