NEW BRTIAIN – The New Britain Museum of American Art is bringing some color to the community with a new performance piece.
Along with the Judy Dworin Performance Project and the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation, the museum is hosting “ColorFields” now until May 23.
The special exhibit, “Helen Frankenthaler: Late Works, 1990-2003,” is inspired by the works of the late painter Helen Frankenthaler, who was a particular catalyst for the ColorFields dance project. The Judy Dworin Performance Project, a dance company, will translate the work of Frankenthaler, a pioneering woman painter, into three-dimensional movement.
For Judy Dworin, founder and artistic director for JDPP, Frankenthaler’s pioneering use of color, the centrality of the improvisational moment in her work and her inspiration in nature are key to her work.
“This project has been a creative inspiration and light during the very dark time of the pandemic,” Dworin said. “The partnership with NBMAA and relationship with the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation have been so productive and expanding for JDPP, and I know the various performance events that have and are unfolding will be an exciting translation of her work into the medium of dance.”
Performers will use dance and movement to interpret visual image and spoken word, but due to the pandemic and covid restrictions, JDPP had to find different ways to put the show together and prepare.
“Online rehearsals were the farthest thing I could have imagined for our process before the pandemic arrived. But necessity prevailed and we were all open to try and we began reinventing the way we approached just about everything,” Dworin said. “Zoom was where we met to share dance explorations and ideas from our living rooms, surrounding natural spaces and home studios. It was totally different, but it worked.”
The outdoor performances of ColorFields will take place May 13.
“The virus has impacted our timing, but has doubled our commitment to exhibiting Frankenthaler’s work this spring,” said Min Jung Kim, NBMAA executive director. “Having JDPP interpret her paintings into three-dimensional dance gives such an incredibly fresh perspective on these artworks, and art in general. You can really see how it’s all part of a continuum.”