Posts tagged ‘Theatre’

July 21, 2013

Interesting | Japanese influenced fashion performance

To celebrate 20 years of activity, designers Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren opt for a very conceptual collection featuring 20 looks in tech silk all rigorously black and yet all different, each with its own identity and, assembled together, they form a tableau vivant in the shape of a zen garden. The result is more then a fashion show, but a real artistic performance.

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March 24, 2012

The Trial | Shuji Terayama

As part of my research for the Vietnam & Rethink projects,  I went to the ‘I Am a Terayama Shuji‘ symposium at Tate Modern yesterday.  It ended in a presentation of two of Terayama’s live action works bridging cinema and performance with the participation of Terayama’s original collaborator Henrikku Morisaki.  The Trial (1975) begins with a man hammering nails into a city street before normal social order collapses and the ‘disturbance’ spreads to an act of violent audience participation.  Terayama made this work for projection on a specially constructed screen and provides white leader at the end as an invitation for audience members to abandon their position as spectators and take possession of their own energies, hammering nails into the surface of the image (see images above).

Questions were an important part of the work of Shūji Terayama(1935–1983) whose striking creative work exists in a liminal space between fact and imagination. Terayama’s career recalls an eerie tale of Japanese folklore in which a face shifts to become a different face. An acclaimed filmmaker, poet, radio and stage dramatist, essayist, photographer and horseracing tipster (with no less than eight volumes of commentary to his name) Terayama was, in the words of theatre critic Akihiko Senda, ‘the eternal avant-garde’.

In an era when Japan’s underground was reaching a fever pitch, Terayama was a crucial player in a complex network of creative expression, encompassing such counter-cultural legends as singer Akihiro Miwa, photographer Daido Moriyama and graphic artist Tadanori Yokoo.

As a tribute to this ‘many-headed’ artist, Tate have curated an astonishing film and video programme of his trailblazing shifts through varied media and performance; Terayama always made work that was interrelated, often producing visionary and unexpected outcomes in whatever his chosen form.  You can find out more here.

October 22, 2011

Lucinda Childs


Just got back from seeing the 1979 revival of DANCE by Lucinda Childs and the movie Lucinda Childs by French director Patrick Bensard at the Barbican which were both AMAZING!

Influential choreographer, dancer and opera director Lucinda Childs was an original member of the Judson Dance Theater in New York. During the early 1960’s, most independent modern dancers struggled to have their work showcased. However, as Sally Banes suggests in her book Greenwich Village 1963, the world of dance dramatically changed with the formation of the Judson Dance Theater. In her opinion, the theater was a “vital and highly visible collective that made its impact, not only on the dance world, but on the village art scene,” as well.

The theatre grew out of a dance composition class taught by Robert Dunn, a musician who had studied with John Cage. Unlike most dance troupes, the members of the Judson Dance Theater were both trained dancers, as well as, untrained visual artists, musicians, poets, and even filmmakers. On July 6, 1962 the theatre company gave its first performance, Concert of Dance #1, at the Judson Church. For the next twenty years, the Judson Dance Theater would dominate postmodern dance.

Part of the success of the theatre was due to the conscious effort of its artists to work collectively.  DANCE is a collaboration between Childs, composer Philip Glass and artist Sol LeWitt.