Monday, December 19, 2016

Convergence | Divergence | Emergence: A New Conversation on Bauhaus + BMC (Part Two)



Convergence | Divergence | Emergence: A New Conversation on Bauhaus + BMC (Part Two)

By Max Eternity


On a visit to Asheville, North Carolina, last year, I spent time at the Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center. I interviewed Alice Sebrell while there, at which time the museum was exhibiting a show called Convergence | Divergence: Exploring Black Mountain College and Chicago’s New Bauhaus / Institute of Design.

Harriet Sohmers Zwerling, The Studies Building, ca. 1949, gelatin silver print. Gift of the artist.

In Part One of the interview, Sebrell talked about the interconnectedness of the [original] German Bauhaus with Black Mountain College (BMC) and the New Bauhaus, both in the United States. We talked also about how the exhibition came together—the endeavored work of Michael Reid, who curated the show.

Now in the continuation and conclusion of our conversation, Sebrell recalls the preservation effort I led for the Atlanta-Fulton Central Public Library, which was the final building built by Bauhaus alumni, Marcel Breuer. We also talked briefly about some of the art and textiles at the Bauhaus, and at BMC, including works by master weaver, Gunta Stotzl. Thereafter, Sebrell and I talked about the campus buildings at BMC—the first campus and the second campus—and specifically about E. W. Grove, who was the property developer responsible for initially building the BMC site, and other notable sites in the area.

What follows is the end of our recorded conversation and some snapshots of the catalog for Convergence / Divergence: Exploring Black Mountain College Chicago’s New Bauhaus / Institute of Design.

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Saturday, December 3, 2016

Conversations: Ruth Erickson, Curator @ ICA Boston, Part Four

Conversations: Ruth Erickson, Curator @ ICA Boston, Part Four
By Max Eternity


In the final segment of my podcast interview with Ruth Erickson, the conversation concludes with a discussion about Merce Cunningham.  A link to Part One is here, a link to PartTwo is here, and a link to Part Three is here.  And below is a Youtube video from a 1966 performance:


Cunningham was born in 1919:  the same year that World War One ended and the same year that the Bauhaus school was opened.  Years later, in the summer of 1953 while teaching at BMC, Cunningham would form the Merce Cunningham Dance Company.


MERCE CUNNINGHAM (1919-2009) was a leader of the American avant-garde throughout his seventy year career and is considered one of the most important choreographers of our time. Through much of his life, he was also one of the greatest American dancers. With an artistic career distinguished by constant innovation, Cunningham expanded the frontiers not only of dance, but also of contemporary visual and performing arts. His collaborations with artistic innovators from every creative discipline have yielded an unparalleled body of American dance, music, and visual art.

What follows now is my discussion with Erickson, as we talk about Cunningham and some of the other important, though lesser known, choreographers and dancers at BMC:

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