Martha Graham (1894 – 1991) - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

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Martha Graham (1894 – 1991)

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  1. Martha Graham (1894 – 1991)

  2. Graham was far from the first dancer to rip off her toe shoes and break with the rigid conventions of 19th century ballet. America in the 1910s and '20s was full of young women (modern dance in the beginning was very much a women's movement) with similar notions. But it was her homegrown technique — the fierce pelvic contractions, the rugged "floor work" that startled those who took for granted that real dancers soared through the air — that caught on, becoming the cornerstone of postwar modern dance. Merce Cunningham, Paul Taylor, Twyla Tharp, Mark Morris — all are Graham's children and grandchildren. Her methods are routinely taught today in studios the world over, but you need not have studied them or even have seen any of her dances to be influenced by them. They are part of the air every contemporary dancer breathes. Time Magazine, The 100 Most Important People of the Century, June 8 1998

  3. There is a vitality, a life-force, an energy, a quickening that is translated through you into action and because there is only one of you in all of time, this expression is unique. And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium and be lost. No artist is ahead of his time. He is his time. It is just that the others are behind the time. Dancing is just discovery, discovery, discovery. It takes ten years, usually, to make a dancer. It takes ten years of handling the instrument, handling the material with which you are dealing, for you to know it completely. Think of the magic of that foot, comparatively small, upon which your whole weight rests. It's a miracle, and the dance is a celebration of that miracle Dancing appears glamorous, easy, delightful. But the path to paradise of the achievement is not easier than any other. There is fatigue so great that the body cries, even in its sleep. There are times of complete frustration, there are daily small deaths. We learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living, the principles are the same. One becomes in some area an athlete of God. Some people have thousands of reasons why they cannot do what they want to, when all they need is one reason why they can It takes ten years, usually, to make a dancer. It takes ten years of handling the instrument, handling the material with which you are dealing, for you to know it completely.

  4. Marie Taglioni colored lithographs, circa 1831

  5. Swan Lake, early 20th cent. Margot Fonteyn in Swan Lake, 1945

  6. Suzanne Farrell in George Balanchine's Scotch Symphony (1952)

  7. Rudolph Nureyev, The Nutcracker, 1969 Margot Fonteyn, Sleeping Beauty, 1960s

  8. Lamentation, 1937

  9. Andy Warhol, 1986 Lamentation, 1937

  10. Letter to the World (Emily Dickinson), 1940

  11. Jocasta

  12. Andy Warhol, 1986

  13. Isamu Noguchi, brass wire and bronze "dress" in two parts,1946 for "Cave of the Heart“

  14. Frontier, stage set designed by Isamu Noguchi for Martha Graham, 1935 Martha Graham performance sketch.Pencil

  15. Noguchi, Portrait of Martha Graham, 1929, bronze

  16. Ballet Rambert Airs Irony of Fate