The laboratory led by Nissa Nishikawa and Michele Occelli focuses on disciplines which relate to the body such as meditation, breathing, trance and dance. Movement and story, choreography and ritual weaves with awareness, sensitivity and concentration aiming towards a full integration of mind and body. Together they bring to light the ‘immaterial’ through the awareness of interior and exterior nature while shifting the limits of the individual body into a collective movement.
Nissa Nishikawa's multidisciplinary practice encompasses experimental choreographies, which incorporate structures of story-telling, theatrical devices and sculptural setting. Dance origin, mysticism and craft is placed in relationship with performance to sensitise the site, audience and maker alike. Nishikawa spent her formative years in Yamanashi, Japan with the organisation Dance Resources on Earth. She studied Fine Arts at Concordia University in Montreal, Stage Arts at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and holds an MA in Performance from Goldsmiths University. Her practice with the dervish turning from the Mevlevi order is ongoing. Recent workshops have been held at Chisholme Institute (Scottish Borders), The Victoria and Albert Museum (London) and The American Legation (Tangier).
Michele Occelli’s approach to hypnotherapy utilizes a combination of Ericksonian and ideo-dynamic techniques to enable processes of change and self-discovery. After years of academic research in both eastern and western philosophy (SOAS, King’s College and Goldsmith’s College), he trained as a whirling dervish with the Mevlevi Order of Konya. The study and practice of Hypnotherapy came because of a desire to engage both mind and body as a unity, which is the basis for any form of understanding of both self and the world. He is currently assistant tutor on the postgraduate Hypnotherapy Diploma for the BHRTS at Birkbeck College.