In Asia, dance is an integral aspect of cultural, religious and social life. Numerous temples contain depictions of dancing deities, among these the well-known Shiva Nataraja, whose movement in dance tells of the creation of the world.
In many regions of Asia, dance serves as the connection between humans and the gods. Thus, in some traditions, the creation of a new dance choreography is preceded by a sacrificial rite, or alternatively, the dance itself is understood as a sacrificial offering.
An exhibition about dance is inconceivable without dancers – for who represents dance better than dancers and choreographers themselves? For this reason, the exhibition is deliberately presented “with them” and not “about them”. To this end, six contemporary Asian artists were selected to participate: Bulan Trisna Djelantik (Bali), Didik Nini Thowok (Java), Matsune Michikazu (Japan), Hiah Park (Korea), Terence Lewis (India) and Pichet Klunchun (Thailand). They embody six different Asian dance traditions while at the same time serving as prime examples of current Asian arts. Besides personal items such as costumes and props, the exhibition also displays museum objects hand-picked by these artists.
Supporting programme: ImPulsTanz, K-Pop & Co.
A vital aspect of the exhibition concept is the interactive transfer of knowledge, which extends into the exhibition’s extensive supporting programme. For the entire duration of the exhibition, special weekly guided tours (danced tours!), workshops, presentations and events such as K-Pop are planned. In addition, there will be a series of performances in cooperation with the ImPulsTanz Festival, presented by Singaporean choreographer Ong Ken Sen.
The exhibition is curated by Jani Kuhnt-Saptodewo, Bettina Zorn, and the above-mentioned co-curators from Asia.
For more information, check the Weltmuseum website