Can the figurines boogie?

SculptureCenter is about to break its mold as a top-notch contemporary art museum by presenting the premiere of the dance extravaganza “Figuring” at its Long Island City venue from Jan. 9 to Jan. 14.

This high-energy, 90-minute piece features three female dancers – Lizzie Feidelson, Nicole Marie Mannarino and Sarah Beth Percival – who use micro movements to display emotion. Through their reactions and interactions on stage, they create visible and audible internal systems that contrast with the external forces of space.

It sounds a bit complicated, but it’s all part of the flow. At moments, there’s control. Then, there’s a loss of control. There’s cohesion. Then, there’s chaos. The dancers create responses that are felt, but not seen … and maybe even seen but not felt.

Tickets are $25. Show times are 5:30 p.m. daily from Tuesday, Jan. 9, through Sunday, Jan. 14, although there is no show on Thursday, Jan. 11.

Figuring” was created by Moriah Evans, a 2017 Foundation for Contemporary Art grantee. She’s a bit of a local talent who was an artist-in-residence at LIC’s MoMA/PS1 in 2016, when she partially developed this piece. (She has held similar titles with the New Museum, the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council and the Studio Series of New York Live Arts.)

Evans has a keen interest in exploring the value of bodies in motion and how contemporary landscape shapes human movement and values. For her, dance is a form as well as an expression.

SculptureCenter commissioned “Figuring,” but it is presented in conjunction with American Realness 2018, a Gibney Dance program that is also unfolding at The Invisible Dog Art Center and Industria in Brooklyn and Danspace Project, University Settlement and Participant Inc. in Manhattan. In total, ScultpureCenter and these other venues will present 89 performances of 17 productions as well as installations, discussions and even a “lectured performance” this January.

Although founded in Brooklyn in 1928, SculptureCenter has been located at 44-19 Purves St. in western Queens since 2001. Over the past two decades, the venue has presented works by nearly 750 emerging and established artists.

Once a trolley repair shop, the space was redesigned by Maya Lin, the landscape artist who designed the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington, D.C., in the early 2000s. The nonprofit finished a major, multimillion-dollar renovation which added a bookshop, coatroom, seating area and restrooms in 2014.


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