Curtain Call: Celebrating a Century of Women Designing for Live Performance
From November 17, 2008 through May 2, 2009
Donald and Mary Oenslager Gallery
The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, 40 Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY
A collaboration with The New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, this exhibition featured works by 110 distinguished designers of scenery, costumes, lighting, props, and projections from various performing arts disciplines, including dance, theater, and opera, from the 1890s to the present. Including photographs, sketches, drawings, set models, costumes, performance videos, ground plans, and interviews with designers, augmented by public programs and educational workshops, it focuses on women designers as participants in the major artistic movements of the period, from experimental theater through the development of modern and, later, postmodern, dance. The exhibition also illuminated women’s roles in developing new technologies and materials for performance: for example, women took the lead in the new field of lighting design, from turn-of-the-19th-century experiments to the computerization of cues in the 20th century. The exhibition also investigated the connections among women designers and women-run businesses. This exhibition is made possible in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Order the full color Curtain Call Exhibit Catalog: This exquisite catalogue publishes, for the first time, designs from the library’s archival collection and also includes photographs of costume, scene, and lighting designs by women who have been working in theater, opera, and dance since 1960. 112pp, 236 illustrations.