Art Observed was on site for MELT: an experimental, site-specific dance installation performed at the Salt Pile in lower Manhattan through September 12, 2010. Choreographed by Noémie LaFrance, best known for staging similar conceptual pieces in unconventional urban spaces, MELT incorporates both the aesthetic and acoustic particulars of its location into a multi-media sensory experience. Watch the video above for AO’s exclusive MELT short clip.
The 30 minute performance features eight seated women, each harnessed to the wall beneath the Manhattan Bridge. The dancers are wrapped in a mixture of beeswax and lanolin, which gradually softens, drips, and liquefies, in order to create the illusion that they are melting.
More images and text after the jump.
The choreography is designed to evoke the euphoria and exhaustion of approaching the sun. The dancers melt so that their souls may “escape their ephemeral bodies and disintegrate into light.” They move in similarly-paced yet distinct gestures, to an original score by Erin McGonigle.
MELT aims to engage the audience in a sensual and dramatic visual experience, functioning as both a performance piece and sculptural installation. The work incorporates a variety of themes including global climate change, ritual, mythology, and female beauty.
The dancers featured are Elizabeth Wilkinson, Mare Hieronimus, Teresa Kochis, Celeste Hastings, Ori Lenkinski, Adi Kfir, Meghan Merril, Marcy Schlissel, and Sarah Donnelly.
MELT runs Thursday through Sunday nights until September 12th, 2010 at the Salt Pile, 74 Pike Slip at South Street, under the Manhattan Bridge. It is presented by Sens Production, a not-for-profit production company specializing in site-specific dance performances.
-S. Humphrey and K. Leung
Sponsor’s Website [Sens Production]
Dance Review: Melt by Noémie Lafrance [New York Times]
Women on the Verge of Melting [WSJ]
MELT – Salt Pile [Village Voice]