Works from a US national exhibit of edgy theatrical designs assembled for the 2011 Prague Quadrennial of Performance Design and Space will be shown at La MaMa’s La Galleria in New York from December 6 through 16.
From the Edge, a collection of works from 36 politically compelling productions across America, was commissioned and sponsored by USITT, the United States Institute for Theatre Technology.
The exhibit represented the United States at last year’s Prague Quadrennial, the world celebration of performance design held every four years in Prague since 1967.
The US exhibit for PQ ’11 was titled From the Edge for its focus on work that pushed the limits of how performance design is imagined in the US. Included were works from Tony-award winning designer Kevin Adams’ ground-breaking lighting for the Broadway show American Idiot, Paul Chan’s Waiting for Godot set in post-Hurricane Katrina New Orleans, and scenes from Hell House, a New York take on the Evangelical Christian “haunted houses” that aim to scare teens “straight” with depictions of pregnant cheerleaders and gay men dying of AIDS.
Designs created for these and 33 other bold US theatre productions were displayed in Prague in a graffiti-covered, garage-like structure by celebrated scenic designer William Bloodgood of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. A sampling of the works and a model of the “garage-turned-gallery” will be part of the La MaMa exhibit.
USITT, the professional association of individuals and organizations serving the performing arts and entertainment design and technology industry, has organized and sponsored America’s participation in the PQ since the US began participating in 1975. From the Edge is the 10th USA exhibit for this singular event in world scenography.
La Galleria, at 6 East 1st Street between Bowery & 2nd Avenue, is an extension of the New York City’s famed La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club, whose shared focus is on new work and artistic experimentation.
From the Edge, presented with additional support from Carnegie-Mellon University, will be open Wednesday through Sunday between 1 and 7:30 p.m. December 6 through 16.