Merce Cunningham, Stories of Collaboration with Visual Artists
NamesCunningham, Merce (Creator)Cunningham, Merce (Panelist)Carlson, Trevor (Moderator)Rauschenberg, Robert, 1925-2008 (Artist)Cage, John (Composer)Feldman, Morton, 1926-1987 (Composer)Rouse, Mikel (Composer)Atlas, Charles (Choreographer)Dodds, Baby, 1898-1959 (Musician)Samelson, Henry (Artist)Paine, Susan (Speaker)
Merce Cunningham Video Archive
Dates / OriginDate Created: 2006-10-18
Library locationsJerome Robbins Dance DivisionShelf locator: *MGZIDF 3732
TopicsCunningham, MerceModern dance
NotesContent: Title provided by cataloger, based on original container labelVenue: Recorded 18 October, 2006. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston.Acquisition: Gift; Merce Cunningham Dance Foundation, 2011-2012.
Physical DescriptionVideodiscExtent: 1 videodisc (DVD) (75 min.) : sound, color ; 4 3/4 in.
DescriptionA discussion and Q&A with Merce Cunningham centering on his collaborations with artists from other disciplines, held at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts as part of an annual lecture series. Following a brief introduction by Susan Paine, head of the MFA board of trustees, Merce Cunnningham and Trevor Carlson, then executive director of the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, have an informal conversation, interspersed with performance clips, structured around four pivotal moments in Cunningham's career, which he dubbed his "Four Moments That Led To Great Discoveries." The 'first moment' came with his initial collaboration with composer John Cage in the 1940s, which Cunningham uses as a springboard for a discussion of his decades of work with Cage, artist Robert Rauschenberg and composer Morton Feldman, as well as recent work with artist Henry Samelson and composer Mikel Rouse. (5:16) The 'second moment' began with Cunningham's use of "chance operations" and randomness in his choreography, the genesis of which is the next topic covered. (15:00) This is followed by the screening of a clip from a 1964 Helsinki performance of the Cunningham/Cage/Rauschenberg piece 'Story', and Cunningham speaks about its creation. (21:00) The talk then moves on to a consideration of the 'third moment', Cunningham's film and video work with filmmaker Charles Atlas in the 1980s and 1990s. (33:00) Following this, Cunningham defines the 'fourth moment' as his use of technology in the 1990s and beyond. He discusses the making of the film CRWDSPCR, created using the Dance Forms software program, and a clip is shown. (39:00) The conversation concludes and a Q&A portion begins. (54:00) An audience member inquires about affinities she perceives between Cunningham's work and that of video artist Bill Viola, and Cunningham briefly speaks about his admiration of Viola's work. Cunningham then responds to a question about one of his earliest projects, a 1950s collaboration with jazz musician Baby Dodds. (56:00) This is followed by a query regarding Cunningham's process in selecting artists he'd like to collaborate with and how he determines the best way in which to work together with them. (58:00) The final question concerns Cunningham's work with younger dancers of today---how he's influenced by them and how he works with them when choreographing pieces. (1:04)
Type of ResourceMoving image
IdentifiersRLIN/OCLC: 922889617NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b20809317Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): e9771e30-a9ad-0133-e717-60f81dd2b63c
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