Alexandra Bachzetsis – High Line Art performance, NYC
Alexandra Bachzetsis is a choreographer and artist trained in theater and visual arts, with an early career as a professional dancer. Bachzetsis’s involvement in theater and dance comes from a desire to explore the human body—and in particular the female body—through its codifications in mainstream media and the fine arts. Bachzetsis closely examines the gestures we see in television, film, porn, dance, yoga, aerobics, and more, watching how they are coded and then regurgitated off-screen in our daily lives.
For the High Line, Bachzetsis presents and performs two works in a series: the solo work PRIVATE: Wear a mask when you talk to me and Private Song, with Bachzetsis, Sotiris Vasiliou, and Thibault Lac. For the first piece, Bachzetsis stages banal and mutating gestures from myriad gendered references—including Greek Tsifteteli and Greek Zeibekiko dance. Private Song proposes framing as a perceptual strategy for questioning the spectator’s relation to moving bodies on stage. The piece features popular Rebetiko songs from the 1940s and 1950s, and works with wrestling, Hollywood gender models, and the pictorial history of representations of love and battle.
Organized by Cecilia Alemani, Donald R. Mullen, Jr. Director & Chief Curator, with Melanie Kress, High Line Art Associate Curator.
Alexandra Bachzetsis (b. 1974, Zurich, Switzerland) lives and works in Basel and Zurich, Switzerland and Athens, Greece. Bachzetsis’s work has been exhibited at institutions including the Museum of Modern Art, New York, New York, (2017); the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, the Netherlands (2015, 2013); Tate Modern, London, United Kingdom (2014); the Jumex Museum, Mexico City, Mexico (2014); and Kunsthalle Basel, Basel, Switzerland (2008). Her work has been presented at major international exhibitions including documenta 14, Athens, Greece, and Kassel, Germany (2017); dOCUMENTA (13), Kassel, Germany (2012); the Biennale of Moving Images, Geneva, Switzerland (2014); and the 5th Berlin Biennale, Berlin, Germany (2008). In 2016, Bachzetsis participated in “The Parliament of Bodies” and “Continuum,” Public Programs of documenta 14, in Athens, Greece. Bachzetsis was recently awarded the 2018 Art Prize of the City of Zurich, Switzerland.
PRIVATE: Wear a mask when you talk to me; Private Song