Showing Black and White – Practices for a Choreographer


In Gerhard Bohner’s (1936–1992) dance solo Schwarz weiß zeigen (Showing Black and White), which premiered in 1983 at Hanseatenweg and was at the time still subtitled “Ballet without Dancers”, a systematic attempt at the nature and limits of dance movement is uniquely combined with ideas from conceptual art.

In the space created by Axel Manthey (1945–1995), Bohner designed a choreography on the subject of “showing how it should be”, in which the movement was mainly sketched, the dialogue between choreographer and dancer abstracted through the use of objects. He was “only interested in creating an illusion of movement – a mental space – and experiencing how far this can be communicated to the audience without the medium of the dancer”. As his starting point Bohner took Oskar Schlemmer’s contemplation of the material, of “how exciting it can be to move just one arm, just one little finger”.

Catalan dancer Cesc Gelabert has reconstructed Bohner’s solo works over decades. As a reference to the exhibition, “NOTHINGTOSEENESS – Void/White/Silence“, the Akademie der Künste will show the adapted version of the piece, which was created in 2010 as a co-production with Tanzquartier Wien.

Part of the Members’ Assembly of the Akademie der Künste.

Saturday, 13 Nov 2021

8 pm



Choreography: Gerhard Bohner (1983)

Stage set: Axel Manthey

Music: Georg Friedrich Händel, Glenn Branca

Reconstruction (2010) and dance: Cesc Gelabert

€ 13/7


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