Age & Beauty Part 1: Mid-Career Artist/Suicide Note or &:-/
Nov 10 & 11
Age & Beauty Part 1: Mid-Career Artist/Suicide Note or &:-/ is the first of a suite of queer pieces Gutierrez created over the course of three years that addresses the representation of the dancer, the physical and emotional labor of performance, tropes about the aging gay choreographer, the interaction of art making with administration, the idea of queer time and futurity, and mid-life anxieties about relevance, sustainability and artistic burnout. Part 1 is a duet for 43 year old Gutierrez and 24 year old performer/dancer Mickey Mahar and follows from a packed set of precise unison dances to an irreverent and celebratory corruption of orderliness, suggesting modes of communication and relations where hyper-emotional affect is not only the conceptual and choreographic core of the performance, but also the only hope for continuing in this fucked up world.
Created by MG in collaboration with Mickey Mahar
Music by Jerry Goldsmith, Chuckie and Silvio Ecomo and MG
Text by MG
Set Design by MG with Mickey Mahar
Costume creations by Dusty Childers
Lighting by Lenore Doxsee
Production Management by Sarah Lurie
Management by Ben Pryor/tbspMGMT
Age & Beauty Part 1: Mid-Career Artist/Suicide Note or &:-/ was commissioned for the 2014 Whitney Biennial and was made possible with support and developmental residencies from the Maggie Allesee National Center for Choreography at Florida State University, the ]domaines[ program at Centre Chorégraphique National de Montpellier Languedoc-Roussillon in Montpellier, France and Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia.
“What I love about dance is its lack of pretense and its direct engagement with the body—that everything I need I can find through the body. I love that in visual art contexts there is a high value placed on intellectual content; sometimes I find that pretentious and stupid, but most of the time I’m really excited about it. I appreciate when people want to talk about things in a complicated way because in dance, particularly university dance contexts, you sometimes find the opposite to be true. ” Miguel Gutierrez, Brooklyn Rail Read More
“Mr. Gutierrez knows how to push a work to higher plane. Throughout the dispassionate arrangements of steps and gestures, rage and pain kept flashing, and at the end Mr. Gutierrez let them loose. He sang. He sang into a microphone, wearing a dress of tulle, in a kind of defiant karaoke fantasy, but more than that, he made his material sing, transmuting it into emotional expression.” – Brian Seibert The New York Times Read More
“Gutierrez’s work tends to submerge his audience into a kind of experiential journey into larger questions about human nature. This first installment of a three-part series focuses a lens on the contrast of the 43-year-old Gutierrez’s own performance against that of a younger alter ego in 24-year-old Mickey Mahar.” – Mary Ellen Hunt, SF Gate
“Age and Beauty Part 1 feels like entropy–a copious, detailed, rigorous language devolving into common and familiar, if passionate, expression, Mahar slow, dreamily writhing on the floor while Gutierrez runs or flails or belts a song into a white microphone.” – Eva Yaa Asantewaa InfiniteBody Read More
“But for all the burdens, there are privileges of being a mid-career artist, too. One of which is that when you know who you are, you don’t have to scream to be heard. Gutierrez is at the point where we’ll listen to a whisper and even lean in closer; he doesn’t need to shout anymore. Even when Mahar is rolling around seductively in the back, also enveloped in white tulle, it’s still Gutierrez who commands attention.” – Brian Schaefer Out Read More
“At first glance, Gutierrez and Mahar are an odd coupling. Gutierrez, with his pouf of bronze-tinted hair and fleshy virility, eclipses Mahar, all knobby knees and spectral paleness. In the opening phrases, Mahar appears like a sullen teen forced to indulge in an adult’s cheesy idea of fun. But when he flings himself heedlessly in a physical rebuttal of commoditized sexuality (because it seems when Gutierrez talks about age and beauty, that’s really what he is talking about), he is ethereal, a purer form of humanity who has transcended the gristle and bone of the body.” – Erin Bomboy Dance Enthusiast Read More
“How often do you use the word queer now?
I use it all the time. I’m using that in the context of these pieces by calling them “queer” pieces, partly because I don’t know what that means, and it seems exciting. That word exists kind of like the word smurf. It can mean anything it wants to mean depending on who talks about it. I’ve seen queer used in theory in so many different ways. You can say, What is it? But that’s a very queer operation right there—that you can’t localize it inside of one signification is exactly what the word is proposing.” Miguel Gutierrez in conversation with Gia Kourlas Time Out Read More
Feature image by Ian Douglas