In 1963, the esteemed ballet dancer Erik Bruhn performed the Black Swan Pas de Deux from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake on primetime television in the USA. Two years later, Rudolf Nureyev performed the same dance, with a different female partner, for his appearance on another American variety show. In 2014, artist duo nova Milne erased the female ballerinas from the footage of each televised performance and brought Bruhn and Nureyev together in a pas de deux of their own...Nureyev and Bruhn – who were on-and-off lovers for twenty-five years – appear, posthumously, at once together and apart.
nova Milne often make works by re-choreographing abstracted fragments of archival footage in a way that facilitates implausible new axis of disconnected times. Love and longing feature with prominence and potency in these temporally confused works, which are always multiply dated. 1963/1965/2014 is the title of the work shown here, citing the dates of the two found images, and the later date of their fabricated collision.
- Abridged text from 'Groundless' by Amelia Groom
Erik Bruhn (1963)
Rudolf Nureyev (1965)
Digitised footage cast from the late Erik Bruhn and Rudolph Nureyev (televised February 10, 1963; February 4, 1965) from Tchaikovsky’s Swan Lake 'Pas de Deux' (1877); animation, HDV, silent
1:00 min (loop)