A white man with auburn-blonde hair wearing a green polo shirt, with trees in the background

1108 Park Street
Grinnell, IA 50112
United States

Elliot Mercer

Visiting Assistant Professor

Elliot Gordon Mercer is an interdisciplinary artist, curator, and performance scholar. His research and creative practice investigate the intersections of dance and visual art, with an emphasis in postmodernism and queer theory.

Mercer's creative work engages a minimalist approach to performance while seeking to reveal slippages within minimalism’s presumption of detached neutrality. Focusing on the subjectivity of gesture and legibility of queerness in performance, his work pursues a compositional approach of queer minimalism. In June 2021 his film Sensorium premiered at Frameline San Francisco International LGBTQ Film Festival. Mercer's scholarship centers on the formation of dance archives and the creation of choreographic legacy plans in American postmodern dance. His current book project, “Mapping Dance: The Scores of Anna Halprin,” examines Halprin's career work in dance scoring, art for social justice, and expressive arts therapy.

Mercer is an authorized transmitter of Yvonne Rainer’s iconic postmodern dance work Trio A (1966). He is a graduate of the Tamalpa Institute's Professional Training Program and received a teaching certification in Deep Listening from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.  As a movement practitioner, Mercer is a licensed Gyrotonic and Gyrokinesis trainer. He has completed a Teaching Certification in Labanotation from the Ohio State University as well as a Certificate in Benesh Movement Notation from the Royal Academy of Dance. Mercer holds an M.A. in Performance Studies from New York University and Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Theatre and Drama from Northwestern University.

Education and Degrees

B.A. Saint Mary's College of California

M.A. New York University

Ph.D. Northwestern University

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