Exhibition Shows Fruits of Isamu Noguchi-Martha Graham Collaboration

Classic Arts News   Exhibition Shows Fruits of Isamu Noguchi-Martha Graham Collaboration
An exhibition exploring the artist Isamu Noguchi's long collaboration with choreographer Martha Graham opens today at the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City, New York.

The exhibition runs through May 1, 2005.

The artist worked with the choreographer for about 40 years, creating sets for 19 of her dances. "Without Isamu Noguchi, I could have done nothing," Graham once said. "Always he has given me something that lived on stage as another character, another dancer."

Nine of these sets: for the works Frontier, El Penitente, H_rodiade, Dark Meadow, Night Journey, Judith, Embattled Garden, Acrobats of God, and Phaedra: are on display in the exhibition.

These sets comprise around 35 objects, which were in Graham's ballets were danced on or around. Rather than being displayed as sets, however, the works will be shown as art installations in their own right, and arranged in an order that makes sense of Noguchi's aesthetic development, instead of chronologically.

The exhibition also includes archival photographs and sketches and drawings relevant to the installations, and a gallery showing footage of Graham's dances being performed.

To supplement the exhibition, the museum has arranged a series of panel discussions about the Noguchi/Graham collaboration, including one featuring past and present dancers from the Martha Graham Dance Company and another featuring choreographers Bill T. Jones and Molissa Fenley. Other conversations will focus on how performance space is changed through the addition of sculpture, fashion, and other visual-art elements.

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