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Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes: When Art Danced with Music

December 28, 2017 @ 2:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Introduction by Curator Jane Bianco and Screening of Film

Artist Marguerite Zorach came of age during a heady period of change and discovery in the arts early in the twentieth century.  Travelling throughout Europe, the Near East and Asia, she gained insight into global cultures and design—and relished the post-impressionism found in the costuming, curtains and stage decorations of the Russian Ballet. She was much taken with dance spectacle, performances by Isadora Duncan and the colorful Ballets Russes, established in 1909 by the Russian impresario Serge Diaghilev. Its ground-breaking integration of music, dance and visual lavishness created a sensation in the avant-garde culture of Paris while she was living there. The company mesmerized audiences with colors, texture, and movement of its costumes that simulated intricate paisleys, brocades and silks patterned by butterfly wings or other marvels of nature’s design. The fabulous stage sets and costumes by Leon Bakst drew from medieval tapestries, shimmering brocades, Indonesian batiks, Persian or Indian miniatures, fluttering Greek or Roman drapery—an opulence of pattern that inspired Zorach for years to come.

Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes: When Art Danced with Music running time: 55 minutes. This documentary includes footage of revivals of Ballets Russes performances by the Joffery Ballet and the New York City Ballet. Also featured are sets and costumes from Daighilev’s innovative productions, as well as interviews with dancers, musicians, and scholars. The exhibition Marguerite Zorach—An Art-Filled Life is on view through January 7th, 2018. Exhibition curator, Jane Bianco, will introduce the film.

Cost: Free with admission.


December 28, 2017
2:00 pm - 3:00 pm


Farnsworth Auditorium
16 Museum St
Rockland, ME 04841-2867 United States
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