Lament of a Dance Fan
This past summer, as I was at the American Dance Festival, it was impressed upon us how precarious is the existence (i.e., the funding) of the arts in general and of dance in particular. This left me in a funk for some weeks afterward.
A couple of months ago, I read a review of a new book of photography by Mikhail Baryshnikov, Merce My Way. Working in a bookstore, I ordered in two copies. It is a lovely book, really. The photos are of the Cunningham company in motion. These are not the photos of someone like Lois Greenfield, with her stunning, crisp moments captured in mid-air. Baryshnikov's clarity comes not in the focus but in the blur. He captures a path the dancers travel. So, you can't see every detail of the dancer's face or body. You do see every detail of how they're moving.
Over a month ago, when Merce died, I put those two copies on display, hoping that someone will see them, want to mourn Merce with these photos. A major, giant of a dancer and choreographer had just died and I thought surely someone would come in asking about books on him. Some one.
But it hasn't happened. And the books sit on a display. They'll probably be returned to the warehouse soon.
I'm not sure what I want to say about this. Maybe I just want to say it. Maybe I've said enough.