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Exit Art presents an exhibition and programs about Downtown Directors.

Exit Art brings together works of six influential theater directors for new exhibition
Show People: Downtown Directors and the Play of Time

Featured Artists: Reza Abdoh, Anne Bogart, Richard Foreman, Meredith Monk, Peter Schumann, Robert Wilson

May 11 - August 17, 2002
Opening Reception: Saturday, May 11, 6-8 pm

Exit Art is located at 548 Broadway between Prince and Spring Streets in SoHo. Hours are Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m.; Saturday, 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. (Café Hours: Thursday and Friday, 10 a.m. - 6 p.m., Saturday 11 a.m. - 6 p.m.). The galleries are closed on Sunday and Monday. The suggested contribution for admission is $2.00, which goes to support Exit Art's programs.

Curator: Norman Frisch
Associate Curator: Jodi Hanel
Project conceived by: Papo Colo

From May 11 through August 17, 2002, Exit Art will present an exhibition and a series of public programs entitled SHOW PEOPLE: Downtown Directors and the Play of Time. The exhibition explores the practice of six extraordinary stage directors whose work has proved central to the evolution of a "Downtown" aesthetic and artists' community over a span of four decades: Reza Abdoh, Anne Bogart, Richard Foreman, Meredith Monk, Peter Schumann, and Robert Wilson.

Sculptors of space and time, each of these influential artists has developed a body of work equally informed by experimental practices in the visual, literary, and performing arts. All based early in their respective careers in the neighborhoods of Manhattan below 14th Street, these artists -- along with their colleagues, collaborators, and protégés -- have gradually emigrated from the lofts and streets of Greenwich Village, The East Village, SoHo, and Tribeca to create acclaimed work in theaters, opera houses, and galleries around the world. SHOW PEOPLE traces these individual and collective artistic trajectories, featuring installations created for the exhibition that provide insights into the ideas and principles which have served these artists from the times of their youth through the present moment.

SHOW PEOPLE has been curated by Norman Frisch, a well-known New York performance curator and dramaturg. In addition to the six artists' installations, the exhibition will house a media café and archive, in which visitors can view videotapes of performances and interviews by the featured artists and many of their colleagues and contemporaries.

Drawing from their personal archives, each of the five living artists has created an installation for Exit Art recalling (in various ways) their earliest theater works, and the ideas that have fueled their practice since. Anne Bogart, director of The SITI Company, has created a space in which she directs visitors in a self-generated performance event. Richard Foreman demonstrates "10 Things I Hate About Theater" in an installation utilizing 30 years of personal journals and promptbooks, alongside a rare collection of 3-D photographs and 8mm film. Meredith Monk projects one of her first solo performance/installations (16 Millimeter Earrings) and artifacts of some of her most memorable ensemble productions of the 1970's and 80's. Sculptor Peter Schumann recreates a corner of The Bread & Puppet Museum, distilling forty years of activist performance history within a muslin tent. From the archives of Robert Wilson emerge evidences of the director's first years in New York City, when the young Texan and his Byrd Hoffmann School of Byrds transformed a Spring Street loft space into an incubator for the incipient SoHo performance scene. And the late Reza Abdoh -- who died of AIDS in 1995, following a dazzling career encompassing fewer than 12 productions - is represented by a video retrospective of virtually his complete body of works for stage and film, lovingly assembled by his former collaborators.

SHOW PEOPLE at Exit Art brings together a wealth of privately held archival treasures and production recordings, many of which have never previously been exposed to public view. Exhibition curator Norman Frisch explains, "We wanted to create a show for young people that documents the extraordinarily rich history of Downtown experimental theater, focusing on a group of seminal artists who were recognized even in their own youths as important creative innovators. SHOW PEOPLE traces the development of these youthful ideals and aesthetic experiments over a span of decades, and serves as a platform for these very major artists to speak to young people now who may be pondering their own creative contributions and destinies. And for those of our own generation, who experienced firsthand these explosive theater productions as they first burst upon the scene, the exhibition is a reflection of the ideas and watershed events which have shaped our own lives over the past decades."

In addition to the six artists' installations and media archive, SHOW PEOPLE will encompass a series of weekly screenings and discussions at both Exit Art and at Anthology Film Archives, details of which will be continually available and updated at the Exit Art web-site (www.exitart.org).