Categories
Abrons Art Center Avant_Garde_Arama Bushwick Starr Comedy Dance Half-Straddle Music Performing Arts Women

FLASHBACK – Half Straddle performs at Avant-Garde-Arama – May 2nd, 2015 – Abrons Arts Center

In these very trying times, I wanted to reach back to a performance that startled me when I originally documented it. The performance by Emily Davis on May 2nd. 2015 Avant-Garde-Arama had that impact on me. Performed at the Abrons Arts Center on behalf of the amazing Bushwick Starr performance space. Seeing this piece now in these difficult times makes us realize how valuable the AGA was for so many years. This show was ‘chock-full’ of wonderful performers. (John Fleck, Uzi Parnes and Ela Troyano, Half Straddle, Martha Wilson, Travis Chamberlain (for Jennifer Monsoon) Holly Hughes, Jack Ferver, Yin Yue Dance and the Institute for Psychogeographic Adventure.) Watch and listen to this ‘Half-Straddle’ piece performed by Emily Davis.

ABOUT HALF-STRADDLE

Half Straddle is an Obie-winning, New York City-based ensemble of performers and designers that make plays, performances, videos, and music led by writer and director Tina Satter that have been seen through the United States and internationally. 

Half Straddle has premiered 10 full-length shows, and a number of shorter works and video projects that have been seen at festivals and theaters throughout the U.S., Europe, Australia, and Asia.  

In October 2019, the critically acclaimed Is This Room, a show conceived of and directed by Tina Satter and starring Becca Blackwell, Emily Davis, Pete Simpson, and TL Thompson, with costumes by Enver Chakartash, was the company’s Off-Broadway debut at the Vineyard Theatre. The show had premiered at The Kitchen in January 2019. In 2014, Half Straddle’s show House of Dance was nominated for a ZKB Patronage Prize at Zürcher Theater Spektakel. 

The company began in 2008 and received their Obie Award grant in 2013. 

All of Half Straddle’s company members and collaborators work extensively in a range of other performance contexts, often creating their own work, in avant-garde theater to Broadway, to university teaching and as theater artists in NYC public schools. 

In New York City, the company’s work has been presented at the Vineyard Theatre, The Kitchen, New York Live Arts, New Museum, Danspace, Performance Space New York (formerly PS122), Bushwick Starr, HERE Arts Center, Dixon Place, American Realness at Abrons Arts Center, COIL Festival, Ice Factory Festival, and PRELUDE Festival.

ABOUT BUSHWICK STARR

The Bushwick Starr began in 2001 as a developmental space for the New York based theater company, Fovea Floods, Inc. In 2004, the company helped to fully convert the space to a black-box venue while producing a large-scale theatrical run. In the subsequent years, as the neighborhood of Bushwick began to transform into a thriving artistic nexus desirous of space and support, we decided to open our doors to other artists. Since doing so, we have quickly grown into a bustling theatrical venue, enjoyed by artists and audiences near and far.

We believe in the power of art to communicate in surprising ways. The work we present is bold, new, and daring, often melding disciplines, and always full of ideas. The Starr supports artists with 360 degree love by offering an attentive, nurturing, and supportive environment for our artists, helping them develop their best work under ideal circumstances. We provide a space that houses and ignites the conversation around intersecting communities and creates a cultural bridge through ongoing community programs and events.

AVANT-GARDE-ARAMA

Avant-Garde-Arama is Performance Space 122’s longest-running series. A multi-disciplinary mini-festival featuring break out performances in dance, music, theatre, performance art, video/film, and more presented in eight minutes or less. While PS122’s East Village home is being renovated, Avant-Garde-Arama and other programming will take place at multiple venues around the city.

# # # # #

Categories
Book Shelf Photography Writer

Vaudevisuals Bookshelf – “The Downtown Book” – 1974 – 1984 NY Art Scene

img037

img038

Downtown is more than just a location, it’s an attitude–and in the 1970s and ’80s, that attitude forever changed the face of America. This book charts the intricate web of influences that shaped the generation of experimental and outsider artists working in Downtown New York during the crucial decade from 1974 to 1984. Published in conjunction with the first major exhibition of downtown art (organized by New York University’s Grey Art Gallery and Fales Library), The Downtown Book brings the Downtown art scene to life, exploring everything from Punk rock to performance art.

The book probes trends that arose in the 1970s and solidified New York’s reputation as arbiter of the postmodern American avant-garde. By 1974, the hippie euphoria of the previous decade, with its optimism, free love, and paeans to personal fulfillment, was over. In its place emerged a new kind of experimentation–in art, sex, drugs, and rock and roll. The seven essays featured here examine from different perspectives how Downtown artists constantly pushed the limits of both traditional media and the art world. Art critic Carlo McCormick addresses the energy, power, drugs, and nonstop erotic motion that propelled the scene. Music historian Bernard Gendron explores how minimalism, loft jazz, and Punk all occupied the same Downtown spaces. RoseLee Goldberg, the noted scholar and critic of performance art, looks back at ten years of its ascendancy Downtown. English professor Robert Siegle casts a critical eye on the literature of the Downtown scene. Librarian and archivist Marvin J. Taylor surveys Downtown as both geography and metaphor, and grapples with the question of how best to organize and preserve materials that often challenge the very notion of the archive. The book also includes seminal essays on the critical theories underlying Downtown art, by Brian Wallis; and on Downtown film, by Matthew Yokobosky.

The essays are intercut with personal reminiscences by such renowned pioneers of the Downtown scene as Eric Bogosian, Richard Hell, Lydia Lunch, Ann Magnuson, Michael Musto, and Martha Wilson. More than 150 striking photographs feature Downtown denizens and galleries; works by Cindy Sherman, Keith Haring, and many other artists; and hotspots such as CBGBs and Club 57. Hip and provocative, The Downtown Book provides a rare glimpse into the cauldron of the New York artistic counterculture–and the colorful characters who inhabited it.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“In the late 1970s, when Gregory Battcock and I were both writing art columns for the Soho Weekly News, he divided Manhattan into two kinds of people: the Downtown Slouches and the Uptown Swells. This is a book filled with facts and anecdotes, told by astute eyewitnesses and not detached scholars, about the Downtown Slouches–and the wonderful crazy things they did, and made, over a remarkable ten-year period. All of the contributing writers and artists emphasize one crucial issue: for everyone living and working below Fourteenth Street at that time, identity was synonymous with geography–urban space was our mental space. We were refugees from the America of the 1950s and 60s, outcasts of the suburbs and the shopping malls. We wrote, painted, performed and played music in grateful homage to our spiritual home–and our offerings have borne fruit, as this book makes abundantly clear, by illuminating the history of American art.”–Shelley Rice, New York University

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

After the Vietnam War we thought we could change the world with a cultural revolution. Read this book and find out how we did it: Art and more Art and lots of Art.”

Karen Finley, Visiting Professor, Tisch School for the Arts, New York University

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

“This is history still alive. More than memory, it is our identity. Did we know what we were doing? Yes. We were coming in on energy. And creating the ultimate conflagration. Some kind of end-times party. It’s all over because it’s all over everything we see, hear, and do now. These writings overflow with exquisite passion for a juiced time. Eventually, they swept the streets. But we were already out of there.”

Thurston Moore, singer and guitarist for Sonic Youth

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

 

 

Categories
Abrons Art Center Art Avant_Garde_Arama Performing Arts PS122 Video Women

Martha Wilson – Avant-Garde-Arama – May 2nd, 2015


Martha Wilson (Representing Franklin Furnace) performs at the May 2015 Avant-Garde-Arama at Abrons Arts Center. Produced by PS122 and on loan to Abrons Arts Center for that weekend’s performances.

Categories
Abrons Art Center Avant_Garde_Arama Bushwick Starr Dance Dixon Place LaMaMa etc Music Performing Arts Photography PS122 Puppetry Video

PS122 – “AVANT-GARDE-ARAMA” @ Abrons Arts Center – Fri/Sat, May 1st,2nd, 2015

On May 1st and 2nd Abrons Arts Center hosted the ever so popular PS122 show Avant-Garde-Arama. Curated by Salley May and featuring numerous downtown performance artist. Friday night was hosted by Erin Markey and Penny Arcade and Sat night was hosted by Erin Markey and Carmelita Tropicana. The list of performers is as follows:
Friday night: Jennifer Miller & John Jasperse, Animals, niv Acosta, Theodora Skipitares, Rebecca Patek, The Ballez by Katy Pyle, Ismael Houston-Jones.
Sat night: John Fleck, Uzi Parnes and Ela Troyano, Half Straddle, Martha Wilson, Travis Chamberlain (for Jennifer Monsoon) Holly Hughes, Jack Ferver, Yin Yue Dance and the Institute for Psychogeographic Adventure.
This video is the OPENING sequence of both nights!

 

 Here are some memorable images from both nights!

2015.05.01_AGA.033Salley May busts thru the “Social Reform” tissue and starts to cause havoc to society.

R2015.05.01_AGA.575Co-Hostesses Erin Markey and Penny Arcade start the show off right.

Representing ‘Movement Research’ – Jennifer Miller and John Jasperse in a dance duo.

2015.05.01_AGA.562Representing Dixon Place – ‘Animals’ performance group.

Representing PS122 – niv Acosta performed a ‘sing along’ with the audience.

2015.05.01_AGA.099Representing LaMama – Theodora Skipitares was projected on a video screen while 2 puppeteers performed on stage.

2015.05.01_AGA.147Representing BAX – The Ballez Dance duo with Katy Pyle

Representing Movement Research – Ishmael Houston-Jones dance a wonderful solo blindfolded.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

SATURDAY NIGHT

2015.05.02_AGA.2.180Carmelita Tropicana and Erin Markey hosted the Saturday night show with Salley May pitching in.

Screen Shot 2015-05-07 at 12.30.34 AMRepresenting LaMama – John Fleck performed a lovely solo with flashlight and courage.

Representing The Bushwick Starr – Emile Owens performed a solo on behalf of Half Straddle.

Screen Shot 2015-05-03 at 2.36.01 AMxxxRepresenting Franklin Furnace – Martha Wilson performed as Tipper Gore.

2015.05.02_AGA.2.015Representing The New Museum – Travis Chamberlain (for Jennifer Monson) charmed the audience into moving in the theater.

2015.05.02_AGA.2.025Representing WOW – Holly Hughes performed a monolog.

2015.05.02_AGA.2.063Representing Abrons Arts Center – Jack Ferver with Reid Bartelme performed a ‘spoken word’ dance duo.

Representing Russell Projects – Yin Yue Dance company did a beautiful piece.

Also present in the show was:

Representing The Chocolate Factory – Rebecca Patek

Representing The Performing Garage/Wooster Group – The Institute for Psychogeographic Adventure

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Video of John Fleck, Yin Yue Dance, Half Straddle, Jack Ferver and Martha Wilson to coming soon!

 

Categories
Art Peculiar Works Project Video

DadaDialogue – A Panel Discussion about the impact and influences of Dada

DadaDialogue
On April 7th after the performance of 'Floydada' (at the site specific Merchant's Square Building in lower Manhattan), a panel of four women (Anges Berecz, Julia Buntaine, Dorothea Dietrich & Martha Wilson) sat with the audience and cast and talked about their experiences and influences with the art of Dada.

Presented by Peculiar Works Project.
For more information on the play go here.
http://bit.ly/1Jwk42u