Eiko Otake in A Body at the Pillow; photo Brooke Trisolini

Inspired by the stillness, shape, light, and sound of diverse spaces, Eiko Otake left the historical Pillow grounds with a new sense of place and grandeur on Saturday July 22, 2017.

In honor of the Pillow’s 85th Anniversary Season, Japanese-born artist Otake presented this new installment of her solo project A Body in Places, titledBody at the Pillow. In three engagementsaudiences were guided to the outer edges of the Pillow grounds along the restored Wetlands Trails, familiar pathways including in front of the Ted Shawn Theatre and the Pillow Rock, as well as the new Perles Family Studio. Each location brought a refreshingly new perspective to these hallowed grounds we know so well.

What she has to say is fascinating to watch in all its fragile, intimate beauty.


Eiko Otake in A Body at the Pillow; photo Christopher Duggan

The A Body in Places project began in Fukushima, Japan, where Otake responded to the earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear meltdown events that affected the area. Historian and photographer William Johnston captured unforgettably powerful images of Otake in these desolate evolving spaces, which were displayed on the Doris Duke Theatre porch and three downtown Pittsfield window fronts for the month of July.

Eiko Otake; photo Brooke Trisolini

The series has extended its boundaries to various locations including train stations, warehouses, and even libraries. The Pillow was fortunate enough to also present Otake’s A Body in a Library at The Berkshire Athenaeum, Pittsfield’s Public Library, where she also engaged in an artist talk addressing her process and the environmental issues present in her work. 

View video footage of A Body in a Library here and here.

Eiko is able to “radiate both frailty and abandon” in her performances.

The New York Times

Eiko Otake's A Body in Pittsfield; photo Brooke Trisolini

Interwoven between passersby, Otake reacted to the urban streets of Pittsfield, MA at the July Third Thursday street festival. A Body in Pittsfield engaged viewers in a unique movement exploration, unlike any had ever seen in the city before.

View a video clip of A Body in Pittsfield:

Furthering her engagements with the Pillow, Otake hosted several workshops for people who love to move or who want to love to move with delicious feelings. Delicious Movement Workshops are emphatically noncompetitive and appropriate for all levels of training and ability. Brought to various communities, colleges, and art schools, Otake uses movement study as a means of inquiry along with readings and media exploration.

Eiko Otake's Delicious Movement Workshop; photo Brooke Trisolini

I’m not a political activist. What I can offer is time and space to gather and reflect.