Noted art historian Richard Kendall discusses his controversial exhibit Picasso Looks at Degas, the first exploration of Picasso's lifelong fascination with Degas, presented by The Clark.
Using pairings of Picasso's Two Dancers against Degas' Ballet Dancers, Standing Nude against Little Dancer Aged Fourteen, and Running Woman against Grand Arabesque, Second Time, Kendall demonstrates how the exhibit challenges us to question how we ourselves look at modern art.
EXCERPT from PillowTalk: Picasso Looks at Degas / Others Look at Boléro recorded August 21, 2010. Moderated by Jacob's Pillow Scholar-in-Residence Nancy Wozny. Additional guest: Johannes Öhman, Artistic Director of The Göteborg Ballet.
PillowTalks feature world-renowned choreographers, dancers, authors, filmmakers, historians, and critics in live hour-long moderated discussions of the cultural forces shaping the field of dance. Curated by Jacob's Pillow Director of Preservation Norton Owen and moderated by Jacob's Pillow Scholars-in-Residence, PillowTalks use dance as a prism to explore the world at large.
Exhibition curator and independent scholar Richard Kendall is Curator at Large for The Clark. He received his master's degree in art history from Courtauld Institutue of Art in London in 1971. In 1996, Kendall received the Hawthornden Prize for Art Criticism, awarded for the catalogue of Degas: Beyond Impressionism. He most recently curated the exhibition Degas and the Dance for the Detroit Institute of Art and Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Kendall has written several books and scholarly catalogues, articles in scholarly journals, catalogues for private galleries, and exhibition and book reviews, along with delivered lectures and papers at institutions in Europe and the United States. Many have heard and seen his work as a consultant, writer and narrator on television and radio programs including a one-hour film in the Great Performances Series, Degas and the Dance on New York channel 13. www.clarkart.edu
Dance writer and scholar Nancy Wozny, is a contributing editor at Dance Magazine and covers the arts at CultureMap in Houston, TX. Her work has appeared in The Houston Chronicle, Pointe, Dance Teacher, Dance Spirit, Artshouston,
Culturevulture, Dance Source Houston, Dance Studio Life, and other publications.
She is a 2005 NEA Fellow of the American Dance Festival's Institute for Dance Criticism. She is also a 2004 recipient of the Gary Parks Memorial Award for Emerging Dance Critics, a two-time recipient of Artists Project Grants from the Cultural Arts Council of Houston/Harris County, a 2001 finalist for the Sommerville Award in Somatic Writing, and a 1994 Research Fellow at the Leonard Bernstein Center for the Arts and Education.
(born July 19, 1834, Paris, Francedied Sept. 27, 1917, Paris) French painter, graphic artist, and sculptor. The son of a wealthy banker, he entered the École des Beaux-Arts in 1855. He spent much time in Italy studying and copying the Old Masters and became a skilled draftsman, producing history paintings and portraits. In the 1860s he was introduced to Impressionism by Édouard Manet and gave up his academic aspirations, turning for his subject matter to the fast-moving city life of Paris, particularly the ballet, theatre, circus, racetrack, and cafés. Influenced by Japanese prints and the new medium of photography, he used displaced figure groupings and unfamiliar perspective to create figure groups seen informally and in movement, similar in effect to snapshots. His fascination with the ballet and the racetrack sprang from his interest in picturing people absorbed in the practiced movements of their occupations. He often worked in pastel, his favourite medium, producing series of women, bathers, ballerinas, and horse races. From c. 1880 he modeled wax figures, which were cast in bronze after his death. He was the first of the Impressionists to achieve recognition.
(born Oct. 25, 1881, Málaga, Spaindied April 8, 1973, Mougins, France) Spanish-born French painter, sculptor, printmaker, ceramicist, and stage designer. Trained by his father, a professor of drawing, he exhibited his first works at 13. After moving permanently to Paris in 1904, he replaced the predominantly blue tones of his so-called Blue Period (190104) with those of pottery and flesh in his Rose Period (190406). His first masterpiece, Les Demoiselles d'Avignon (1907), was controversial for its violent treatment of the female body and the masklike faces derived from his study of African art. From 1909 to 1912 Picasso worked closely with Georges Braquethe only time Picasso ever worked with another painter in this wayand they developed what came to be known as Cubism. The artists presented a new kind of reality that broke away from Renaissance tradition, especially from the use of perspective and illusion. Neither Braque nor Picasso desired to move into the realm of total abstraction in their Cubist works, although they implicitly accepted inconsistencies such as different points of view, different axes, and different light sources in the same picture. By 1912 they had taken Cubism further by gluing paper and other materials onto their canvases. Between 1917 and 1924 Picasso designed stage sets for five ballets for Sergey Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. In the 1920s and '30s, the Surrealists spurred him to explore new subject matter, particularly the image of the Minotaur. The Spanish Civil War inspired perhaps his greatest work, the enormous Guernica (1937), whose violent imagery condemned the useless destruction of life. After World War II he joined the Communist Party and devoted his time to sculpture, ceramics, and lithography as well as painting. In his late years he created variations on the works of earlier artists, the most famous being a series of 58 pictures based on Las Meninas of Diego Velázquez. For nearly 80 of his 91 years Picasso devoted himself to an artistic production that contributed significantly to and paralleled the whole development of modern art in the 20th century.