'I still don't know whether a protagonist of Lia Haraki's practice is herself or energy that makes the self happen. Or an energy that depersonalises us in an intimate act that discards the notion of a protagonist itself….’ Raimundas Malašauskas , Curator
‘….Lia juggles contemporary dance and performance in innovative ways.. Haraki views the body as a carrier of identity, yet subject to the transformative potential of performance. At the centre of the artist’s investigation in recent years is what she terms ‘IntuNition’, which seeks to investigate how movement can come as a result of an intuitive process.’ (Danai Molocha – cultural trip)
Lia is an artist with the body as a central tool as well as a lecturer and a curator. She lives in Cyprus and works in the frame of the artistic structure .pelma.Lia Haraki. which she founded in 2003
Lia studied Dance Theatre Studies (BA) at the Laban centre in London. Ever since she has been creating works for the stage and alternative spaces both locally and internationally. Her work has been presented in festivals like the Kalamata International festival, Julidans Amsterdam, The Athens Festival, Royal Festival Hall London, Bozar Brussels, Unesco Paris, The Place London, Tanec Praha, Kleines Haus Dresden, Korzo The Hague, Euro-scene Leipzig and other.
Lia has been one of the artists who represented Cyprus in the Venice Biennale for visual Arts in 2013 with the solo ‘Tune In’ curated by Raimundas Malasauskas (Special mention for the Cyprus and Lithuanian Pavilion). She has been awarded two times the choreography award at the Cyprus dance platform (2003, 2005) and her works were two times short listed by the Aerowaves network (2004, 2009). Lia has been part of several EU Programme which include ‘Emotional Bodies and cities’ - 2013 (guest artist), ‘Act Your Age’ - 2013 (Artist), ‘The underwater Heart of the Mediterranean’ 2015-16 that presented the first ever underwater dance performance (Partner). She has worked as a choreographer in several theatre productions at the National theatre of Cyprus (THOC) . Her latest collaboration with director Aris Biniaris in ‘The Persians’ by Aeschylus toured Greece and Cyprus including the ancient theatres of Epidaurus and the Herodion. The production was extremely successful with Kariofilia Karambeti in the leading role of Atossa.
In 2005 she initiated Dance House Lemesos which is the space that supports professional contemporary dance in Cyprus and functions as a point for the development of collaborations with organizations and artists from the European dance scene.
Lia is interested in the knowledge and information which is concentrated from the creative processes which usually take the form of a methodology taught by her as a workshop in structures like the Impuls Tanz Vienna Festival. Such workshops are ‘Standup PerformDance’, ‘IntuNition’, ‘The Onion’, ‘Keep calm and stay away from Narcissism’, ‘The RRR workshop’, ‘Seeing sound, hearing object’ for artists and non-professionals. In 2007 she has been part of the core team who created the dance programme of The University of Nicosia. She is a part time lecturer of the programme teaching movement composition based courses. She also taught at the Theatre studies programmes of Intercollege and Satiriko theatre.
As a curator Lia has been the representative for the Aerowaves network (2004-2016). She has curated the events entitled ‘Aerowaves Nights’ at Dance House Lemesos (2008 και 2010) and did the programming for the 6th Open House International dance festival of Dance House Lemesos with the theme ‘SEXPECTATIONS’ with international artists such as Ivo Dimchev, Hodworks, Tabea Martin.
IN 2014 she created the project entitled ‘The performance Shop’ in the frame of the Pop Up festival of NiMAC in Nicosia (theperformanceshop.org). The project was a pop up shop offering performances on display in the windows and private ones by producing works of artists from the field of live performance. Later the project was hosted in Limassol in 2015 and in 2018 in Athens in the frame of the Athens and Epidaurus festival. In 2016 The Performance shop was selected as one of 25 best practices in Europe by the EDN (European Dance House Network) which answered to the questions ‘how dance can become relative’. The Performance Shop project attracted the attention of performance artist Marina Abramovic who in a conversation with Lia Haraki in Athens 2016 said referring to the project that ‘It is a very fresh and good idea’.
Lia’s Tedx talks ‘Whatever you perform is right’ in Tedx Limassol and ‘The necessity of performance’ in Tedx Patras informed and inspired audiences to embrace performance as an everyday ritual accessible to all.
In 2019 .pelma.Lia Haraki is hosted at Polis Theatre OPAP in collaboration with NiMAC (in collaboration with the Pierides foundation). In this frame .pelma.Lia Haraki runs a residency programme called ‘BRIDGES’ which aims at finding connections between arts and sciences by hosting ten artists and scientists from the local and international scene.
“What’s useful to me about the past few years is that we create intuitively, with the trust that later we’ll be able to understand what it’s about, so for me lately it’s a reverse process to what I was used to. It’s not a mental process. It’s a calling … It’s as if the piece is in another realm and we’re downloading it.”
Lia Haraki from an interview to Kestrel Leah (August 2019)
2013 Venice BIennale for visual Arts (special mention for the Cyprus and Lithuanian Pavilion)
2016 Nomination for the choreography award in the play ‘Fortunatos’ directed by Magdalena Zira
2009 Aerowaves Network final list for the piece ‘Pretendance’
2007 'Creator of the Year’ Madame Figaro awards voted by the public
2005 Honorary prize in the Cyprus Dance Platform for the piece ‘Eye to I’
2004 Aerowaves Network final list for the piece ‘Evergreen’
2003 First prize in the Cyprus Dance Platform for the piece ‘Evergreen’