ArtsATL > Dance > Streb, a group that stands at the nexus of dance, performance and extreme sport

Streb, a group that stands at the nexus of dance, performance and extreme sport

Streb performs in front of London's Tower Bridge. Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images for Mayor of London
Streb performs in front of London's Tower Bridge. Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images for Mayor of London
Streb performs in front of London's Tower Bridge. Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images for Mayor of London
Streb performs in front of London’s Tower Bridge. Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images for Mayor of London

The close relationship between modern dance and visual art has a long history. (For a summary of 20th-century connections, I recommend the precis of “Dance Through Life,” a recent exhibit at the Centre Pompidou in Paris.)

The boundaries between dance and art, especially performance art, are particularly fluid now. Dance performances were part of the 2012 Whitney Biennial, for example. An Atlanta case in point is Nicole Livieratos’  “Folding: anticipatory, routine, closure,”  which she performed recently at the Museum of Contemporary Art of Georgia. This porousness seems to have vexed those running the dance awards, the Bessies, who felt the need to institute a new category for “work not technically considered dance but happening in and influencing dance in New York.”

Just to mix it up a bit more, there’s Streb, a Brooklyn company that fuses Merce Cunningham (“We invent action ideas which we think are archetypal, noticeable, understandable,” says founder Elizabeth Streb), a very literal form of slam dancing and extreme sport. The group appeared, appropriately, at the London Olympics.

 

The Back Story

 

The Performance

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