Restagings No. 2: Of Serra (to movement)
Richard Serra’s Prop Pieces enact a moment in time. Steel plates and rods balance precariously against each other between wall and floor. Hal Foster reads the Props as an endpoint, the successful struggle “of rising up and remaining up.” There is another possibility, however, that the Props represent a starting point, the moment a figure acquiesces, releasing itself to the effects of gravity. Restagings No. 2: Of Serra (to movement) takes up this invitation of the Props—that they could slowly give way to gravity, that if we watched long enough, they would come to look more like the bodies that first inspired them—leaning, bending, responding—somewhere between submission and resistance to the forces acting upon them.
Of Serra is the second work in Levine’s Restagings series, which translates iconic modern and postmodern artworks into performance. Restagings mine the choreographic logic and somatic ideas built into visual art works, unearthing bodies and labor implicit in objects, drawings, and texts, returning them to our experience of the original works. No. 1: Choreographing LeWitt (30 hours over 5 days) premiered in 2017 and No. 3: Fall (C.A.) (10 1/2 hours in one day) will be performed in October 2019.
Choreography & design: Abigail Levine
Sound design: Paula Matthusen with Dexter Dine
Performance: Abigail Levine, Vitche-Boul Ra, Maho Ogawa
Video: Esy Casey
June 11-14, 2018
Abigail Levine is an artist working between New York and Los Angeles. Rooted in dance but moving across media—performance, text, drawing, sound—Levine focuses on the poetics of our body’s work, how we record and value it. Her latest work, the Restagingsseries, has been presented at Fridman Gallery, Vox Populi and The Knockdown Center, supported by Foundation for Contemporary Arts, New Music USA, and residencies at The MacDowell Colony, Center for Performance Research, Brooklyn Arts Exchange and Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts. Past works have been presented throughout the US, in Cuba, Canada, Brazil, Mexico, Venezuela, Greece and Taiwan. Levine performed with both Marina Abramovic (2010) and Yvonne Rainer (2018) in their retrospectives at the Museum of Modern Art.
Paula Matthusen is a composer who writes both electroacoustic and acoustic music and realizes sound installations. Her work often considers discrepancies in musical space—real, imagined, and remembered. Awards include the Walter Hinrichsen Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters, a Fulbright Grant, two ASCAP Morton Gould Young Composers’ Awards, and the 2014 –2015 Elliott Carter Rome Prize. Matthusen is currently Associate Professor of Music at Wesleyan University.
Dexter Dine is an electroacoustic composer and songwriter, working primarily with guitar and laptop. He is currently the musical director of Roxy + Company, a dance company in Brooklyn.
Maho Ogawa is a New York based movement artist originally from Japan. With a background in ballet, traditional Japanese dance, and Butoh, she explores the origin of movement language. www.suisoco.com
Vitche-Boul Ra is an interdisciplinary performance practitioner based in Philadelphia, PA. University of the Arts 2018: BFA in Interdisciplinary Fine Arts, Sculpture and Dance.