Dance with CameraSeptember 11, 2009 - March 21, 2010
Opening Reception: Thursday, September 10 @ 6-8 pm
Exhibition Walkthrough with curator Jenelle Porter:
Thursday, September 10 @ 5pm, ICA members only
Dance with Camera is an exhibition and a screening program that explores a
crossover between artists and dancers who make choreography for the
camera. The exhibition features art works in film, video, and still photography
that exemplify the ways dance has compelled visual artists to record bodies moving in time and space. Screenings elaborate the show’s theme with iconic dance films, ranging from Busby Berkeley’s Hollywood musicals to Maya
Deren’s avant-garde films. Dance with Camera, on view September 11, 2009-March 21, 2010, in ICA’s first floor gallery, spans seventy years of art and film, and features over thirty artists and filmmakers between its exhibition
and screening program.
The art works in Dance with Camera show the camera lens as not merely a
recording device, but stage and audience simultaneously. The camera
creates a unique space for dance. In some instances, choreography is created
for the specific space of the camera; in others it is created in editing. The camera, unlike the stage, allows close-ups that bring us near the performer. Editing is used to compress time and create structure, and even to transform
relatively static performers into dancers. Still photography freezes time while also expanding the notion of dance as time-based. Dance itself is a mode to explore broader themes of narrative, structure, metaphor and abstraction.
Dance with Camera begins in the 1960s with seminal works by Bruce Conner and Bruce Nauman. Conner’s prototypical BREAKAWAY (1966) prefigured music videos, and threads through the recent work of robbinschilds. Early video artists of the 1970s took up dance as a subject, seen in works such as Eleanor Antin’s narrative ballet-themed works, and Charles Atlas’ first works with Merce Cunningham. The camera’s role as documentarian characterizes contemporary works by Mike Kelley, Kelly Nipper, Tacita Dean, and Elad Lassry, among others. Works by Oliver Herring and Flora Wiegmann use dynamic camera views and kinetic editing to make vibrant videos of dancers, and nondancers. The drama intrinsic to stylized, physical movement is captured by Luis Jacob, Joachim Koester and Uri Tzaig.
In the galleriesEleanor Antin, Charles Atlas, Ann Carlson and Mary Ellen Strom, Bruce Conner, Tacita Dean, Oliver Herring, Luis Jacob, Mike Kelley, Joachim Koester, Elad Lassry, Bruce Nauman, Kelly Nipper, robbinschilds + A.L. Steiner, Uri Tzaig, Flora Wiegmann, and Christopher Williams.
Screenings at International House
(October 14, November 18, December 9, January 13, February 17 and
Charles Atlas, Natalie Bookchin, Shirley Clarke, Bruce Conner, Thierry de Mey, Maya Deren, Ed Emshwiller, William Forsythe, Hillary Harris, Hy Hirsh and Sidney Peterson, Babette Mangolte, Sharon Lockhart, Norman McLaren,
Sidney Peterson, Yvonne Rainer, and many more (list in formation). Films include: Dames (Busby Berkeley), All That Jazz (Bob Fosse), Singin’ in the Rain (Gene Kelly), Top Hat (Mark Sandrich), The Red Shoes (Michael Powell), and Blood Wedding (Carlos Saura).
A special March film program will be curated by Philadelphia Dance Projects.
This exhibition will travel to the Contemporary Arts Museum Houston
(August 7-October 17, 2010) and Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art (January 15 – April 30, 2011).
Dance with Camera is curated by Curator Jenelle Porter, and is accompanied by a fully-illustrated catalogue.
Related Public Programs
Lecture: Under the Influence of Busby Berkeley
Whenever Wednesday, October 14, 6:30pm
Choreographer and filmmaker Kriota Willberg lectures on the enduring influence of 1930s and 1940s director/choreographer Busby Berkeley. His crazy camera moves, sex, elaborate staging, geometry and stream-ofconsciousness editing style continues to impact cinematography━and to sell products from food to cigarettes. Willberg traces Berekely’s signature choreographic and film style by tracing a “typical” Berkeley phantasmagoric film transition: the “I Only Have Eyes For You” sequence from the film, Dames (1934).
Whenever Wednesday, October 21, 6:30 pm
Kinetic Cinema is a New York-based screening series that explores the intersection of dance and the moving image. Each month organizer Anna Brady Nuse invites a special guest from the dance and film communities to share the films and videos that have inspired and influenced their own work. The series kicks off with a night of dance on film curated by nenowned choreographer and filmmaker Victoria Marks. Look for the second evening of Kinetic Cinema in early 2010. In addition to being seen in Philadelphia, these screenings will also be presented at Chez Bushwick in New York.
Lecture: ICA Curator Jenelle Porter On Dance with Camera
Whenever Wednesday, December 2, 6:30PM
ICA is grateful for primary funding from an Anonymous donor. We acknowledge additional support from Jody and John Arnhold & Babette and Harvey Snyder. Further funding has been provided by The Horace W. Goldsmith Foundation; the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Council on the Arts; The Dietrich Foundation, Inc.; the Overseers Board for the Institute of Contemporary Art; friends and members of ICA; and the University of Pennsylvania. (as of 7/22/09)
Images, top to bottom: Kelly Nipper, interval, 2000, four framed chromogenic process color prints, each 39 3/4 x 50 5/8 inches. Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago. Joachim Koester,
Tarantism (still), 2007,
16 mm film installation
6:31 minutes. Courtesy Greene Naftali, New York. Sharon Lockhart, Goshogaoka, 1998, 16mm film, sound, 63 minutes. Courtesy of Blum & Poe, Los Angeles