Life is history. In the course of life, we accumulate things. Objects and material stuff, but also memories and lived experiences, including physical knowledge, rituals, and patterns. A sampling of culture in New York provided a fascinating survey of how artists gather and translate information into dance and art that, with luck and perseverance, is woven into our collective history.
|Leslie Uggams. Photo: Joan Marcus
|James Greenan in What We Hold. Photo: Nir Arieli
|Pavel Kolesnikov and Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker. Photo: Anne Van Aerschot
Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, one of the most accomplished choreographers of our time, also founded a successful school in Belgium, PARTS. She has earned to right to do whatever she wishes, and recently she choreographed a nearly two-hour solo, The Goldberg Variations: BWV 988 (seen at Skirball as part of Van Cleef & Arpels' Dance Reflections). Watching her work has always demanded focus, from the early themes of boundless repetition, to subtle hand gestures, limb swings, and skipping steps. Pavel Kolesnikov, playing the Variations on stage with his back to us, rendered the iconic score with incredible delicacy and nuance. This immersive mid-career movement compilation, tedious for spans, with several costume changes, was bolstered by the sturdy music. In any case, we witnessed the source—mind and body—of her immense oeuvre at work and play, at times in disparate fragments.
|Beatrix Potter, pencil drawing, April 7, 1876. Linder Bequest, Museum no. BP.741.
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London/courtesy of Frederick Warne & Co. Ltd.
|Mira Nadon, Sara Mearns in Solitude. Photo: Erin Baiano