NYCB Art Series Presents Portraits Of Behind-the-Scenes Ballet Staff By Lauren Redniss

NYCB Art Series Presents: Lauren Redniss (2020)

(New York) – New York City Ballet presents the eighth installment of its acclaimed Art Series initiative during the Company’s 2020 Winter Season. Launched in 2013, New York City Ballet’s Art Series features annual collaborations between NYCB and contemporary visual artists who create original works for exhibition at the Company’s home, the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center.

For the eighth anniversary of Art Series, NYCB has commissioned an installation from Lauren Redniss, a 2016 MacArthur Fellow and associate professor at the Parsons School of Design.

Redness is best known for three volumes of blazingly original, category defying visual non-fiction that seamlessly integrates original artwork, written text, and design. These include Radioactive, which traces the scientific work and love story of Pierre and Marie Curie and was the first visual book to be a finalist for the National Book Award in non-fiction; Thunder & Lightening, a meditation on weather, which was published in 2015 and received the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award; and Oak Flat: A Fight for Sacred Land in the American West, a multigenerational saga about the effect of copper mining on the lives of two families in southeastern Arizona, which will be published in April 2020.

Artist and Writer Lauren Redniss | 2016 MacArthur Fellow

Oral history is at the heart of Redniss’ work, and for her 2020 Art Series installation Redniss drew inspiration from the many behind-the-scenes staff members at New York City Ballet. She conducted interviews with more than 100 people who are typically unseen and unsung but who are crucial to the day-to-day life of NYCB, including ushers, security guards, ballet masters, call center operators, the piano technician, and many others. After conducting these interviews Redniss then created a large-scale, vividly-colored portrait of each person with whom she spoke. The installed artwork will transform the theater’s Promenade into a vibrant 360-degree panorama of portraits.

“I want to give people a different perspective on the Company, something that will add depth and meaning to their experience of coming to the ballet,” says Redniss.

The 2020 Art Series installation will be on display from Tuesday, January 21 through Sunday, March 1 during all of NYCB’s 2019 Winter Season performances. NYCB will also host free, open hours for the general public to view the exhibition on the following dates: Saturday, February 15 through Sunday, February 23 – Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., and Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

NYCB Art Series Presents Shantell Martin (2019)

In addition, NYCB will hold three special Art Series performances, which will take place on Saturday, February 1 at 8 p.m.; Friday, February 7 at 8 p.m.; and Thursday, February 27 at 7:30 p.m. All single tickets for these three Art Series performances are priced at just $35 and will go on sale at noon on Monday, January 6 at, or by calling 212-496-0600. Each Art Series performance will be followed by a post-performance party on the theater’s Promenade open to all audience members.


Launched in 2013, NYCB Art Series was designed to produce annual collaborations between contemporary visual artists and New York City Ballet in an effort to showcase and celebrate the visual arts during NYCB performances at the David H. Koch Theater at Lincoln Center. The first seven installments of Art Series have featured acclaimed installations by FAILE (2013), JR (2014), Dustin Yellin (2015), Marcel Dzama (2016), Santtu Mustonen (2017), Jihan Zencirli (aka Geronimo) (2018), and Shantell Martin (2019).

NYCB Art Series Presents Jihan Zencirli aka GERONIMO (2018)

Through the use of non-traditional marketing, social media engagement, and specially priced tickets, the NYCB Art Series was also conceived to engage audiences new to NYCB, as well as to cross pollinate NYCB’s existing fans with those of the commissioned artists. Art Series has introduced tens of thousands of new patrons to New York City Ballet, helping to change the Company’s demographic make-up.

In addition to NYCB’s unparalleled history of commissioning new work from numerous composers and choreographers, the Company also has a long tradition of working with visual artists such as Isamu Noguchi, Andy Warhol, Julian Schnabel, Francesco Clemente, Helen Frankenthaler, Roy Lichtenstein, Keith Haring, Santiago Calatrava, Per Kirkeby, and others, all of whom have created artworks and other visual elements for NYCB performances. The lobby of the David H. Koch Theater, which was built for NYCB and opened at Lincoln Center in 1964, also features a permanent collection that includes several landmark works of art, including Jasper Johns’ Numbers, Lee Bontecou’s Untitled Relief, and Elie Nadelman’s Two Female Nudes and Two Circus Women.

New York City Ballet Art Series Presents Santtu Mustonen (2017)

NEW YORK CITY BALLET is one of the foremost dance companies in the world, with a roster of more than 90 dancers and an unparalleled repertory of modern masterpieces. The Company was founded in 1948 by the legendary choreographer George Balanchine and arts patron Lincoln Kirstein, and quickly became world-renowned for its contemporary style and a repertory of original ballets that has forever changed the face of classical dance.

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Press Release Via: New York City Ballet

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