DWJones Dance Works
ARTISTRY. RESEARCH. CHOREOGRAPHY. EDUCATION. ADVOCACY.
Artist. Choreographer. Researcher. Educator. Advocate.
Dieca W. Jones is a dance educator and artist, currently based in the Dallas/Fort Worth area of Texas, and is the Dance Department Director for Haltom High School in Birdville Independent School District. Her work brings together aspects of dance, research, education, place and activism. Her current projects focus on the built form of architecture and how bodies simultaneously create place and meaning through movement. She seeks to take audience members from a stance of observation to participation, begging the question of how much choice and ultimately responsibility we have within the world we live. Recent works include Muro Fronterizo, a site-specific dance work in collaboration with North Texas Dream Team, exploring the issues and complexities of immigration in her own back yard. Squaring the Circle,explored the essence of home within a practice as research method of art making. With a strong interest in education and social engagement Jones seeks opportunities to connect with other like minded artists, participating in Ana Sanchez-Colberg’s global participatory event Seven to the Seventhwhich connect artists and participants across cities and communities and will also be continuing dialogue with her mentor in the upcoming project 1(-1). Archives and current works by Jones can be experienced at www.dwjonesdance.com
Philosophy of Teaching
My role as an educator is of upmost importance to me. It is the aspect of my praxis that connects me to the world in meaningful ways through authentic care and genuine connection with my students. I believe all students, regardless of individual circumstances, deserve the best education possible, particularly in the art of Dance. I view the classroom/studio as a community in which I have the opportunity to facilitate and inspire a love for lifelong learning and processual thinking. It is important to prepare students for the future, which is why 21st century skills are the foundation for learning in my dance studio. The 4 Cs -Critical Thinking, Collaboration, Creativity, and Communication, are well suited to developing sound dance practices as well as life skills. I view knowledge as a process, having no end point but developing a set of skills that are applicable to the student beyond the studio. Within the curriculum, life lessons are embedded into intentional rigor in dance technique and choreographic artistry. Utilizing high expectations as fuel for the classroom, there is an understanding that failure is a necessary and beneficial part of the learning process in establishing resilience and grit. In order to create the appropriate environment, the dance studio must be a place to feel comfortable, validated, and safe. Students are seen as unique and valuable individuals who are not merely receptors of knowledge but also as collaborators in their own education. Learning is best accomplished through student centered instruction. Giving students ownership and responsibility in their own education is accomplished by providing opportunities for students to be an integral part of the dissemination of information through peer to peer evaluation and student led instruction. A framework and expectations for the classroom are set with the understanding that flexibility through observation of the students is the magic that fuels an affective learning environment. Ultimately my goals as an educator are to provide a sense of community wherein rigorous instruction and character development are skill sets that are gained and translated to ways of life for the student beyond the classroom.
Doing What Matters Most.
I am a dancer, scholar, choreographer, educator, and advocate. Each of these roles is imperative to my artistic identity. I am inspired by questions that I may never find answers to within my work but I ultimately value the space to have conversation within my art form. I honor diversity, individuality, and humanity in the dance world. I see my embrace of phenomenology and Practice as Research, as a necessary act in both the academic and performative dance worlds. My willingness to be present, altruistic, and hermeneutic is purposely aligned to the predisposition of valuing modern and contemporary dance over other forms. I am intrigued by those that are often relegated to the margins of society. My research interests center on an investment in understanding the interplay of form and function in choreography through considering phenomenology in architecture and built space to create place through site-responsive social engagement. With a deep interest in social engagement and the collective experience an emphasis is put on bodies and built space as collaborative resources in the creation of the work. My scholarship purposely and strategically informs my choreography and pedagogy. I have great interest in considering questions about our society as a creative practice in dance on the stage and academia. Each dance work that I facilitate involves a four pronged approach to inquiry - research, pedagogy, choreography, and activism. Simultaneously and holistically exploring the work in the academic setting, while creating original work through in studio practice, and involving and inviting the community to be co-collaborators in the work is a consistent pattern for my praxis.. My role is as the facilitator to learning, my choreographic work serves as a container for the lived experience of bodily movement considering time and space as integral structures that allow me to investigate the connections, meanings, and relationships that are inevitable within the inter-subjectivity of the work. As a dance artist I strive to improvise and collaborate, always leaving room for others; embracing dilemma to find solutions, doing what matters most.
Site Responsive Practice
From Whence You Came
Intermedia work inspired by the up and coming neighborhood of Springfield in Jacksonville, Florida.
Practice as Research
Squaring the Circle
Processual art making through in studio investigation of domestic movements and embedded deeper meanings.
Choreography as a political statement with intention to empathize, educate, and cause change.
First and foremost, Dieca is a teacher and scholar at heart. She thrives on the level of energy and excitement that is a part of serving as dance instructor and her students respond in kind. She is a proactive person who takes to heart the true essence of how important it is to build relationships. The excellence of her work can be traced to her tireless efforts to make any program exceed expectations. Dieca has a work ethic and determination that is matched by few out of the myriad of educators I have worked with in my 34 years as an educator.