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Exhibition Catalogs

"New York Story" Revisited

Garafola, Lynn

Labels, wall texts, and reflections on the exhibition "New York Story: Jerome Robbins and His World," curated by Lynn Garafola, Donald and Mary Oenslager Gallery, The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, March 25 - June 28, 2008.

The labels, wall exits, and reflections that follow are an effort to revisit an exhibition that did not, alas, have a published catalogue or a robust website. Exhibitions are like performances. When they close, they are dismantled, and the objects, their magic gone, sent back to their boxes. In revisiting "New York Story: Jerome Robbins and His World," I wanted to evoke the experience of walking through the Donald and Mary Oenslager Gallery of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, with the reader enjoying by suggestion and as an act of imagination the numerous objects on display tracing the remarkable career of Jerome Robbins as an artist of the ballet, Broadway, and concert stage in mid-twentieth-century New York. This is the second of three exhibitions I have curated about ballet in New York City from the 1930s to the late twentieth century. As such it complements "Dance for a City: Fifty Years of the New York City Ballet" (New-York Historical Society, 1999) and "Arthur Mitchell: Harlem’s Ballet Trailblazer" (Wallach Art Gallery, 2018). I remain deeply grateful to the many colleagues and friends at the New York Public Library for the Performing arts who made this exhibition and the research that accompanied it a memorable experience.

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More About This Work

Academic Units
Dance (Barnard College)
Published Here
April 10, 2018