(USA, IL, Chicago) June 15, 2011-Nikki Patin, Chicago-based performer and educator, will move to Auckland, New Zealand mid-July after accepting an offer to attend the University of Auckland as a full-time undergraduate student. Patin, who dropped out of school over 10 years ago to "become a poet", will begin the Bachelor of Arts program as a Drama major and Ethnomusicology minor. In conjunction with her studies, Patin will also begin a groundbreaking, inter-disciplinary project, entitled "The Vitruvian Woman".
Patin's journey to New Zealand began over two years ago. Miriam Barr, Artistic Director of Auckland-based spoken word group, The Literatti, spotted Patin's HBO Def Poetry Jam performance on YouTube. Barr left a comment. Patin responded a few weeks later and Barr offered to plan a national tour if Patin could get herself to New Zealand. Nine months and a million emailed poems later, Patin landed in Auckland and began rehearsing a two-hour collaborative show with The Literatti, "Growl". Patin also toured her one-woman show, "The Phat Grrrl Revolution", throughout New Zealand and Australia, picking up a "Best Performer" nomination at the Dunedin Fringe Festival, as well as appearances on TV3, an article in No. Magazine and interviews on Radio NZ and George FM.
Although attending the University of Auckland will be the main priority, Patin will also begin phase one of "The Vitruvian Woman" project. The project is based on Vitruvius' architectural theory on what it takes to build a good structure. Vitruvius stated that a good structure is solid, useful and beautiful. He also said that the human body is the greatest architectural design in the known Universe. Patin is going to transform her body, according to Vitruvius' theory. Throughout the transformative process, Patin will engage in movement designed to build strength, such as yoga, martial arts and resistance training and eat local, affordable and organic food. The entire process will be documented through writing, performance, photography, video blogging and weekly outlines of Patin's body that will be drawn on canvas. The full details of the project can be found at www.thevitruvianwoman.com .
For the past decade, Nikki Patin has taught workshops and given performances in dozens of elementary schools, high schools, colleges, universities and community organizations, such as Francis Parker, University of Chicago, Adler School of Psychology, Northwestern University, Nancy B. Jefferson High School (located within the Cook County Temporary Juvenile Detention Center), University of Michigan, University of Wisconsin-Madison, YWCA, Battered Women's Network, Broadway Youth Center and many more. As a proponent of social justice, Patin has worked for Rape Victim Advocates, Center on Halsted and POW-WOW. As a performer, Patin appeared on the 4th season of HBO's Def Poetry, won the gold medal at the International LGBT poetry slam in the Gay Games and has designed and published a book, "The Phat Grrrl Diaries", as well as wrote, produced and released a full-length album, "Bedroom Empire". A passionate activist, Patin has spoken out against youth violence in Chicago, spoken up for the rights of homeless and LGBT youth and has written editorials for WBEZ's "848".
Patin is accepting donations and sponsorships for tuition and for "The Vitruvian Woman" project. You can find out more information about Nikki Patin's journey to Auckland, "The Vitruvian Woman" project and how to support both at www.nikkipatin.com .