Jupiter Artland: ‘Trisha Brown: In Plain Site’ and ‘Time, Space, Gravity’

Trisha Brown, Time Space Gravity

[Until 29 September]

Jupiter Artland’s summer exhibition commemorates pioneer experimental choreographer and artist Trisha Brown (1936-2017) and her lasting legacy. Time, Space, Gravity is showing as part of the  Edinburgh Art Festival programme. 

Accompanying the exhibition will be Trisha Brown: In Plain Site, performed by the Trisha Brown Dance Company and commissioned by Jupiter Artland for its first collaboration with Edinburgh International Festival. It is a welcome and long-awaited return to the International Festival for the Trisha Brown Dance Company – last seen in 2007. 

These curated live performances of at least five short dance pieces are adapted for three of Jupiter Artland’s most popular settings: Charles Jencks’ Cells of Life, Phillida Barlow’s quarry and Andy Goldsworthy’s Stone Coppice. It’s very much in the spirit of Trisha Brown’s initial concept of removing choreography from its formal (usually theatrical) setting and taking it into site-specific city rooftops, parks and streets. 

Brown emerged from the legendary avant-garde Judson Dance Theater venue (founded in 1962) in NYC. She created over 100 choreographies and six operas – all whilst developing the language of movement into a more conceptual, almost mathematical realm. In 1970, she formed the Trisha Brown Dance Company which continued her study into a more abstract language of structured movement.

“Do my movement and my thinking have an intimate connection? First of all, I don’t think my body doesn’t think.’ Trisha Brown

Trisha Brown, Time Space Gravity
Trisha Brown | Time Space Gravity | Jupiter Artland

 

Time, Space, Gravity is situated in two gallery buildings within Jupiter Artland. In the Tin Roof Gallery, formerly a farm shed, you’ll find individual screening posts where you can sit down and enjoy up to thirteen filmed dance works. Some are without audio and others make use of headphones. Here you will see dances from the 1960s and 70s, including Walking On the Wall (1971) and Leaning Duets (1970),  often placing simple movements into challenging settings. Also, Just Dancing Around (1996), a Channel 4 documentary which sees Brown narrating the history of her career – including the founding of The Trisha Brown Dance Company.

Trisha Brown, Time Space Gravity
Trisha Brown | Time Space Gravity | Jupiter Artland

 

There are further displays of drawings, photos and screenings. The exhibition curates footage from Brown’s archive alongside work on paper from her vast collection of notational drawings which developed her ‘pure movement’ language of choreography. Also included are filmed lecture demonstrations and footage of longer pieces choreographed for the stage such as Glacial Decoy (1979) and Newark (Niweweorce) (1987). The Time, Space, Gravity title alludes to Brown’s talent for sculpting kinetic movement and choreography in a way which defies and carves through time, space and gravity.

Trisha Brown, Time Space Gravity
Ballroom Gallery | Trisha Brown | Time Space Gravity | Jupiter Artland

 

Continuous large-scale screenings of two films are available to view in the second Ballroom Gallery in the grounds of Bonnington House. Viewers can relax on giant beanbags in this vast space, formerly a ballroom set within a Baroque-style building, which perfectly reflects Brown’s later interest in this aesthetic. 

Trisha Brown, Time Space Gravity
Trisha Brown | Time Space Gravity | Jupiter Artland

 

The two films here, Les Yeux et L’âme (2011) and the ever-popular Set and Reset, Version 1 (1985) will not disappoint. Brown’s interest in Baroque music and dance is apparent here. Costumes, movements and musical score give a definite nod to this style influence. Additionally, Set and Reset is perhaps her most known and well-loved work. Artist Robert Rauschenberg designed the costumes, with a score by Laurie Anderson. Both screenings show mature work that was inspired by those earlier experiments and brought back into a theatre setting.

Bonnington House Steadings
Near Wilkieston,
Edinburgh EH27 8BY

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