performance&dance
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Marron Atrium in MoMA shaked with performance

{Artwork hanging on the wall of Marron Atrium during Sarah Michelson’s choreography “Devotion, study #3”}

Atrium is to be violated, says one of the choreographers. There is nothing there, and the museum space with its white walls is so institutional. Does the empty atrium distance the museum’s audience? It is often showing the architectural without art. But it can be the performance space for all kinds of works.

Some sweet day was a three-week (October 15-November 4, 2012) program of dance performances by contemporary choreographers in the MoMA’s Marron Atrium. New York’s Museum of Modern Art was showing works from several mature choreographers, who gained international status, and who experiment with concepts, performance art and contemporary art. American experimental choreographer Dean Moss has worked together with visual artist Laylah Ali. Their work “Voluntaries”, which explores the legacy of John Brown, was performed during the first week. The Judson Theater founding members Steve Paxton and Deborah Hay were invited as pioneers of performance. Presenting for Paxton, who included two of his works from 1960s, in art museums is not a big deal. However, it can be different for contemporary choreographers like Jérôme Bel. The French choreographer described in the October 20 panel discussion how his work “The Show Must Go On(2001) might encounter the museum space. 

The piece has been made for theater so I was very surprised to perform it in the museum. People who come here, come more to see Picasso, and don’t even know that I’m here, so the work is experimental. You have to be generous, as there are people who don’t come to see ‘you’. Then, in the theater the audience is in the darkness, and here you see them.

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{Audience arrives into Marron Atrium half an hour before the performance. The space gets very crowded few minutes after. photos:firstindigo&lifestyle}

Deborah Hay told in the discussion held on November 3rd that for her the audience is the ‘unknown’. With the dancers, she explores the potentiality. The dancers are returning to the body. Hay encourages them to stay with the ‘question’. She finds the language and its linearity fascinating.

– I use the linearity to create non-linearity for the individual who performs my work.

British choreographer Sarah Michelson described in the same conversation, that museum space evoked new ideas. She had to close the main staircase from the audience to keep the space clear. She chose to use security guards, who were used as brief part of the piece. They brought in the dancer into the atrium, as well as escorted her out. This association created humor, and linked the dance performance into other parts of the museum.

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{Dancers Nicole Mannarino and James Tyson performing Sarah Michelson’s “Devotion, Study #3”. The choreographer herself as DJ during the performance, (below)}

http://www.moma.org

 

 

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