Litza Bixler

The UW–Madison Division of the Arts welcomed Litza Bixler as the fall 2021 Interdisciplinary Artist-in-Residence.

Litza Bixler is a choreographer, filmmaker, movement director, visual artist, and writer. She has produced work on stage, screen, galleries, and mountains. Bixler works across the spheres of art, performance, and film, and has been a working artist and educator since 1995.

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About the Artist

Litza Bixler headshotLitza Bixler is a choreographer, filmmaker, movement director, visual artist and writer. She has produced work on stage, screen, galleries and mountains. Bixler works across the spheres of art, performance and film, and has been a working artist and educator since 1995.

Bixler has created movement and action for some of the most iconic scenes in film including “Shaun of the Dead,” “Scott Pilgrim vs. the World” and “The World’s End.” She has collaborated on a movie musical, a musical series for Disney and a salsa dance comedy. She has worked with a variety of award-winning performers such as: Hugh Jackman, Colin Firth, Simon Pegg, Lake Bell, Sienna Miller, Nick Frost, David Beckham, Bill Nighy, Jude Law and Sam Rockwell.

She has created live-pieces, screenplays and paintings and worked on numerous award-winning advertisements. She has also produced live-art and physical theater pieces with her company Litza Bixler Performance. Bixler is a dual national and often explores liminal spaces, thresholds and metaphorical journeys in her work.  Bixler’s longer bio and work samples are on her website:


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The Spring 2021 Interdisciplinary Arts Residency Program is presented by the UW–Madison Division of the Arts and hosted by the Dance Department with Professor Li Chiao-Ping as lead faculty. The Art Department and Department of Communication Arts are also co-sponsors of the residency.

The UW–Madison Division of the Arts has hosted world-class artists-in-residence since 1995 and formally launched the Interdisciplinary Arts Residency Program (IARP) in 1999. The IARP is made possible by funding from the university’s Office of the Provost.

Guest Artists

Simon Aeppli headshot

Simon Aeppli is a filmmaker and educator. His work has been screened at festivals, galleries, and events in Britain and abroad. Aeppli has taught documentary immersion courses in Poland, Morocco, and London. He is currently a lecturer in documentary and filmmaking at the University of Creative Arts in England. He recently received a technē scholarship for PhD study at the “Centre for Memory, Narrative and Histories” at University of Brighton. He also received development funding for a feature-length project titled Operation Bogeyman.

Twitter: @simonaeppli

Sean de Sparengo headshot

Sean de Sparengo is a multi-disciplinary photographer and director working across art, fashion, advertising, and drama. He originally trained as a dancer and brings a sense of visual choreography and timing to his work.

In 2014, he directed the 30-minute drama, Counting Backwards, which won eight Best Film awards. He recently photographed children in the remote highlands of China for the book I Want to be the Moon; and produced a series of large-scale photographs featuring dancers. De Sparengo is currently developing his own feature film and drama projects.

Paul Machliss headshotPaul Machliss (ACE) started his career cutting music documentary films. He collaborated with Edgar Wright on the cult hit television show Spaced and edited the BAFTA-winning comedies Black BooksThe IT Crowd, and Peep Show. He also cut the TV pilot for the critically acclaimed series Fleabag. Machliss also edited Edgar Wright’s films Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (Eddie nomination), The World’s End, and Baby Driver, which he received an Oscar nomination and a BAFTA win for Best Editing. He is originally from Australia, though has lived and worked in the UK for many years.

Resource + Media Mentions

Man standing on grass outside at twilight with lights glowing on his arms and legs. Image manipulated to indicate motionCreativity, Collaboration and the Creation of Self

Course: Integrated Arts 310/610 (3 credits)*
There is also a 1-credit option available (Integrated Arts 330 listed further below).
Day/Time: Thursday | 5:30-7:00 p.m. and Friday | 2:30-5:00 p.m. (both days will be synchronous)
Limit: 16 students across any discipline
Location: Remote with the possibility for in-person at 249 Lathrop Hall in the second half of the semester
Other Info: The emphasis of the course is on creativity as a whole. No prior movement, performance, media, or visual art training is required. Dance Department degree and certificate students can take this course for the Dance 345 requirement. Students majoring or pursuing a certificate in the Art Department or Department of Communication Arts may contact their advisor to discuss how this class can count toward program requirements.

*All L&S students must register for Comm Arts 609, Lec 002 rather than Integrated Arts 310/610. This course counts towards the Communication Arts major and the Digital Cinema Production certificate as long as students register for Comm Arts 609, Lec 002.

Watch the course promo video.

Download the course flyer (PDF).

Non UW-Madison students will need to apply in advance for special (non-degree) student access at:

Description: This course focuses on the development of creativity and collaboration as base skills that can be applied to a wide variety of fields. The aim is to help students grow as creators and thinkers, and to practice communicating their ideas in an intensely collaborative environment.

The first part of the course will focus on examining creativity in context. The second part is devoted to exploring creative collaboration and culminates in a live and/or virtual public exhibit of films, sound, and images. Both parts will draw on theory and practice through lecture and discussion, creative labs, and workshops, as well as research and participation in the creative process.

The final collaborative piece examines the movement of people across borders and boundaries. Students will explore diaspora, geography, and immigration as essential and positive sources of identity and ask what it means to be “from” a particular place or country. Students will explore how we move: literally, metaphorically, and culturally, and examine the subtext of the question, “where are you from?”

The course will introduce guest artists and speakers from diverse disciplines. Guest artists include Sean de Sparengo, Simon Aeppli, and Paul Machliss. It is ideal for students who are interested in developing and enhancing their creativity. It is also for those who wish to push the boundaries of their field by generating innovative and game-changing ideas. Students should be prepared to work with their bodies, with physical media, and with a variety of art forms, sound, and technologies to produce their creative products.

Litza Bixler posed with one arm stretched overhead in all-white costume. Two hoops intertwine above her head.Creativity and the Creation of Self: Practice & Process  

Course: Integrated Arts 330 (1 credit)
Day/Time: Thursday | 5:30-7:00 p.m. and Friday | 2:30-5:00 p.m. (both days will be synchronous)
Limit: 16 students across any discipline
Location: Remote only with main portion of class ending March 12 and the final individual creative project presented remotely April 22/23
Other Info: The emphasis of the course is on creativity as a whole. No prior movement, performance, media, or visual art training is required.

Description: The 1-credit option explores how creativity intertwines with sociocultural development, technological, and scientific innovation. Students will engage with a broad range of literature from psychology (narrative, cognitive, and behavioral), anthropology, sociology, cultural studies, education, neuroscience, and the arts.

Images courtesy of the artist.


  • Bodies, Borders & Belonging is a multimedia collaborative exhibition created by students enrolled in this semester’s Interdisciplinary Arts Residency course. Read more.
  • Litza was a guest on Cinematalk, the UW Cinematheque’s podcast, to discuss her collaborations with Edgar Wright and the influence of Metropolis on her work. The episode is now available!
  •  Watch a video series interviews with Liza previewing her course, “Creativity, Collaboration and the Creation of Self.”


Cinematheque At Home: The World’s End and Metropolis

March 4 – March 7

Beginning Thursday, March 4 through Sunday, March 7, the UW Cinematheque will present a free view-at-home double feature of Edgar Wright’s The World’s End (2013) and Fritz Lang’s Metropolis (1927). The program was specially curated by current Interdisciplinary Artist-in-Residence Litza Bixler.

Bodies, Borders & Belonging

May 8 @ 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm CDT 
May 9 @ 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm CDT 
Art Lofts111 North Frances Street
Madison, WI 53703 United States 
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As part of Litza Bixler’s Interdisciplinary Arts Residency, this collaborative exhibition examines the movement of people across physical and conceptual boundaries.