Roof Piece (1973/2017) and Roof Piece on the High Line (2012). Babette Mangolte film retrospective. April 4–8, 2018 The CAPC musée d’art contemporain is a museum of the City of Bordeaux.

This spring, the CAPC is proud to present in Bordeaux two filmic installations by French-American artist Babette Mangolte in the emblematic Nave of the museum, accompanied by a comprehensive film retrospective.
A project curated by Anne-Sophie Dinant as part of The Screen, the museum on-going programme dedicated to film and video, which started in 2014 with a series of thematic exhibitions and performance events gathering works by among others, Kenneth Anger, Vasco Araújo, Susanne Bürner, Harun Farocki, LaToya Ruby Frazier, Joan Jonas, Morten Norbye Halvorsen, Laure Prouvost, James Richards and Lis Rhodes.
The summer program will start at CAPC in May with a, site-specific, large-scale installation by Danh Vo, and new shows by Daphné Le Sergent and Suzanne Treister.

Babette Mangolte: Roof Piece (1973/2017) and Roof Piece on the High Line (2012)
This will be the first public presentation of Roof Piece, one of Mangolte’s most recent works. This large filmic installation consists in a three-screen projection of a new edit of the films shot in 1973 documenting Trisha Brown Company’s iconic site-specific choreography performed on the rooftops of SoHo in New York. Also on view will be Roof Piece on the High Line, a film of Roof Piece as restaged by Trisha Brown Company in 2011 on the High Line. This different architectural context, in a more confined space, changed the viewer’s perspective compared to the 1973 piece. Roof Piece captured the movements of the dancers as they responded to each other in the vast architectural space of SoHo, having the spectators look towards the distant rooftops while the dancers formed a chain of improvised movements. Roof Piece on the High Line, in contrast, required the spectators to move about the space in order to see each dancer.

Mangolte’s films of the emblematic dance piece of the 1970s and of Trisha Brown’s restaging almost 40 years later underline her on-going interest in the “subjective camera” and her concerns with the perception of performance that lie at the core of her work. As stated by the artist: Everything I’ve done in performance is about how you look at what you see and how being a spectator is at the core of performance as an art form.”

The two filmic installations displayed in the Nave of the CAPC will give visitors the opportunity to make their own comparison between the two choreographies, through the eye of Mangolte’s camera, as they propose a different perspective on the relationships between the dancers and the audience.

A retrospective of Mangolte’s films will accompany the exhibition, including her first narrative film What Maisie Knew (1975), The Camera: Je or La Camera: I (1977) and her films recording dance and performance including her celebrated Water Motor (1978), Four Pieces by Morris (1993) and Yvonne Rainer RoS Indexical (2008).

Born in France in 1941 and based in New York City since the 1970s, Babette Mangolte is an experimental filmmaker, photographer, artist and writer. Her films emphasize the subjective view of the camera and explore the notion of spectatorship. She worked as director of photography on Chantal Akerman’s influential Jeanne Dileman, 23 quai du Commerce, 1080 Bruxelles (1975). She has filmed dance and performance works by Yvonne Rainer, Trisha Brown, Joan Jonas, Robert Morris, Lucinda Childs, Marina Abramović and Steve Paxton, as well as the theatre scene of the 1970s.

Recent solo exhibitions include Kunsthalle Wien, Vienna (2016) and VOX-Centre de l’image contemporaine, Montreal (2013). Mangolte’s work is shown internationally in group exhibitions, film festivals and screenings in art institutions (recently Tate Modern, London; Migros Museum, Zurich; ICA, Philadelphia; South London Gallery, London; and ICA, London). Her installation How to Look (1978- 2010) is currently on show as part of the Tate Modern permanent collection. Babette Mangolte: Writings: 1998–2015, a selection of texts and essays by the artist, will be published by Sternberg Press, Berlin, later in the year.

Curator: Anne-Sophie Dinant
Acknowledgements to Trisha Brown Company and Babette Mangolte