Seminal video and performance artist Joan Jonas presents her cutting edge multi-media video performance, The Shape, the Scent, the Feel of Things, May 4 & 5 at the McCullough Theatre. Since the 1970s, Jonas has worked between various mediums, freely incorporating video, movement, music, sculpture, and the spoken word into open-end narratives. Featuring original piano score written and performed live by Jason Moran, this collaborative work evokes the American Southwest through an artistic consideration of the Hopi snake dance, a ritual that affecTed Jonas during visits to Arizona in the 1960s.
Joan Jonas was born in 1936 in New York, where she currently lives and works. She received a B.A. in Art History from Mount Holyoke College, in Massachusetts in 1958, and studied sculpture at The Boston Museum of Fine Arts from 1958 to 1961. She received an M.F.A. in sculpture from Columbia University, New York, in 1965. Since 2000, Jonas has taught at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Her first performance retrospective was at the University Art Museum, Berkeley (1980). Since the late 1960s, her work has been exhibited internationally, including at the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; The Kitchen, New York; and the Tate Museum, London. Jonas has had major retrospectives at the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (1994), and Staatsqelerie Stuttgart, Stuttgart, Germany (2000); the Queens Museum of Art, New York (2003), and was represented in Documenta V, VI, VII & XI, Kassel, Germany (2002). Her most recent one-person exhibitions were held at the Jeu de Paume in Paris and at MACBA, Barcelona. She is currently working on a new work for Documenta XIII.
Jason Moran was born in Houston, Texas and began studying the piano at age six. At age 13 he heard the sounds of jazz legend Thelonious Monk, an experience that renewed his wavering interest in music. He attended Houston’s High School for the Performing and Visual Arts and furthered his education at Manhattan School of Music, where became one of Jaki Byard’s last piano students there. Upon graduation, Moran studied with NEA Jazz Masters MuhAl Richard Abrams and Andrew Hill. Moran made his professional recording debut on Greg Osby’s 1997 Blue Note CD, Further Ado. Blue Note president Bruce Lundvall signed the pianist to his own record deal shortly thereafter. Ten, the most recent of eight recordings, was voted Best Jazz Album of 2010 by Downbeat Magazine, which also honored him with 2010 Jazz Musician of the Year and Pianist of the Year. A current member of Charles Lloyd’s New Quartet, Moran has also worked with Cassandra Wilson, Wayne Shorter, Sam Rivers, Meshell N’degeocello, Lee Konitz, Bill Frisell, Jenny Scheinman, Paul Motian, Steve Coleman, Dave Holland, and Don Byron. Moran was awarded the 2007 United States Artist Fellowship, an award annually given to 50 artists in all disciplines. He was also awarded a 2010 MacArthur Foundation Fellowship. Moran joined the New England Conservatory faculty in Fall 2010. He is the Jazz Artistic Advisor for The Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. and Co-artistic Director at the San Francisco Jazz Festival.
Campus & Community Engagement Event:
Post-Performance conversation between Joan Jonas and Lynne Cooke following the evening performance on Friday May 4th
Post-performance conversation between Joan Jonas and Jason Moran following the evening performance on Saturday, May 5th