Obsidian Dream

Sueño de Obsidiana [Obsidian Dream] is the third and final film in the Mothers|Lands Series by dance filmmaker Scotty Hardwig, co-created and performed by Claudia Lavista. Shot on location in Oaxaca, Mexico, the film follows a woman on a spiritual journey through portals of the natural world: water, earth, air, and fire.


Director Biography – Scotty Hardwig, Claudia Lavista

Scotty Hardwig is an experimental movement artist, performer, and teacher originally from southwest Virginia. His research practice stems from the confluence of sensory media and the moving body, creating movement-based artwork through live performance, installation/site-specific, and cinematic frames. He received his MFA in Dance from the University of Utah, and has served on the faculty at the University of Utah and Middlebury College, and is currently an Assistant Professor in Movement, Performance and Integrated Media at Virginia Tech, where he is experimenting and creating choreographic and cinematic works at the intersection of technology and the body.


Claudia Lavista is a dancer, choreographer, teacher and interdisciplinary projects promotor. Claudia began her studies of music and theater at the age of eight. She studied dance at the National System for Professional Teaching of Dance in Mexico City, and has a Bachelor’s degree in Dance Pedagogy from the UAEH. In 1987, she joined the dance company U,X Onodanza and later joined Danzahoy Dance Company from Venezuela. In 1992, she founded Delfos Contemporary Dance along with Victor Manuel Ruiz, becoming a leading dance company in Latin America. She has received several awards for her artistic works including the National Dance Award (MX) in 1992, Best Female Dancer at the International Dance Festival of San Luis Potosi in 2005, and Best Female Dancer at the National Dance Award (MX) in 1998 and 2002. In 2001, the specialized critics selected her as “One of the 10 Best Mexican Dancers of the 20th Century”.

The National Endowment for the Arts (U.S.) has also honored her with several fellowships. In 2007 she was invited as International Visiting Artist at the 25th Bates Dance Festival, she came back as a Faculty member and choreographer in 2010, 2012, 2014, 2016, 2017 and 2021. In 2008, 2011, 2014 and 2020 she received the prestigious National System of Arts Creators, honored by the National Support System for Creation (SAC). In 2008 her piece “Stone Garden” received the “Austin Critics Table Award” as “Outstanding Dance Concert”. In 2011 she received a Mellon Residential Fellowship for Arts Practice and Scholarship at the Richard and Mary L. Gray Center for Arts and Inquiry at the University of Chicago. Her video work Between water walls created in collaboration with Rosamarta Fernández received the “Dona et Cinema International Festival Award as Best video-creation 2012” in Valencia-Spain. In 2020 she received the “Luis Fandiño” Medal for her contributions to the Mexican Dance Scene. In 2022 her video work “Knot” receives the “Best Cinematography Award” at the Experimental Dance and Music Film Festival in Los Angeles E.U. The same year Claudia was honored with the Jerusalem International Fellows Award.

She has been a featured performer in over 85 works of dance, theater, video and opera, working with an international roster of choreographers and artists and performing in some of the world’s most prestigious theaters. Claudia has created more than 55 choreographic and interdisciplinary works in different formats and has collaborated with theater and opera directors, photographers, video artists, poets and other choreographers for more than two decades. Her work has been praised by critics and presented in 25 countries around North America, Latin-America, Asia, Middle East and Europe.

As a teacher she has conducted workshops and master classes in numerous cities throughout Mexico and abroad. In 1998 she created, along with Victor Manuel Ruiz and Delfos members the Escuela Profesional de Danza de Mazatlán/EPDM, which has positioned as one of the leading dance conservatories in Mexico and Latin America. Since 2012, she directs the Creators Special Program at the Centro de las Artes de San Agustín-CaSa in Oaxaca, specializing in the development of new ways of thinking about dance creation and interdisciplinary projects. Currently she is Co-Artistic Director, dancer and choreographer of Delfos Contemporary Dance and Co-Director and professor at the Mazatlan Professional School of Contemporary Dance.

“If we want to talk of the great figures of Latin American Contemporary Dance,
the name of Claudia Lavista is inevitable.”

– Valerio Cesio, Por la Danza Magazine, Madrid


Director Statement

The Mothers|Lands Series is a collection of dance-for-camera works that document movement artists relating to the non-human world and cultural imaginations of their native landscapes, where both human and land are treated as subjects that speak as equals. Through an improvised hybridity of cinematic and embodied art, these works explore the felt expression of nativity, homeland, and language at the crossroads of ecology, geology and culture. In 1983, Swiss philosopher Andre Corboz writes that landscape is “the palimpsest of time,” a canvas upon which human and non-human histories alike are written. Like bodies, landscapes are processes: subject to changes in time through “spontaneous transformation” (like erosion, flooding, glacial or volcanic activity) and “human activity” (like the building of roads, dams, bridges, farms or cities). He writes of landscapes as existing simultaneously as objective, quantifiable forms (which can be measured, known, cultivated and exploited) and as culturally perceived phantasms: “nature is that which the culture designates to be such.” But with what voice does a place speak for itself, in humming-slow tones as we tiny primates dance across its palimpsest of scarred and wrinkled skin? And where, and when, is the “sacred time and space” to listen?







Scotty Hardwig,
Claudia Lavista

Key Cast

Claudia Lavista


Mario Lavista


Michael Ryba

Production Assistant

Itzcuahuzin Edahi Robles Gris