Sharon Lockhart and Noa Eshkol

Sharon Lockhart and Noa Eshkol

Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21)

Sharon Lockhart, Four Exercises in Eshkol-Wachman Movement Notation, 2011.*

November 19, 2012

Sharon Lockhart | Noa Eshkol
November 23, 2012–February 24, 2013

Opening: November 22, 2012, 7pm
Performance: November 27, 7pm at Secession, Vienna

Thyssen–Bornemisza Art Contemporary – Augarten
Scherzergasse 1A, 1020 Vienna
Hours: Tuesday–Sunday 12–7pm

T +43 1 513 98 56 – 24
augarten [​at​]
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During a research trip to Israel in 2008, Los Angeles-based artist Sharon Lockhart (b. 1964) discovered the lost archives of Israeli avant-garde dance composer, theoretician and artist Noa Eshkol (1924–2007) in Holon, a former working-class town that is now a suburb of Tel Aviv. This singular encounter became the starting point for the creation of an ambitious new series of works in film and photography by Lockhart and the recovery, reinterpretation and restaging of highly original movement notations, dance performances and textile “wall carpets” by Eshkol. The exhibition retraces the collaborative encounter of the two artists and explores the nature of artistic practice, its preservation, and its interpretation, as well as the representation of space, time, and movement. It is drawn entirely from the collection of Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21).

Sharon Lockhart I Noa Eshkol, TBA21′s second exhibition at its new venue in Vienna’s Augarten space, brings to light the extraordinary personality and vibrant intellectual creativity of Eshkol. Eshkol’s lifelong research was dedicated to the development of the Eshkol-Wachman Movement Notation (EWMN). The system, first codified in 1954 in collaboration with Avraham Wachman, revolutionized dance and movement notation. It established a unified system of recording movement using numbers and a minimal alphabet of symbols in a grid format, offering dancers and choreographers a systematized tool to compose and notate dance in a fashion similar to the way a composer writes a musical score.

For more than 50 years, Eshkol developed a compelling dance practice based on the structures of movement in space and the articulations of limbs in rotational, planar, and curved surface movements. Today performed and taught by the circle of dancers with whom she closely practiced—the Noa Eshkol Chamber Dance Group—Eshkol’s dance compositions give form to the notation system and represent a significant chapter of modern dance history that has remained nearly undiscovered.

In Sharon Lockhart I Noa Eshkol, Lockhart synthesizes the main elements of Eshkol’s practice, collapsing dance, theory, artistic practice, and conceptual strategy within a series of closely interrelated works. As such, Sharon Lockhart I Noa Eshkol employs methods of reconstruction, restaging, research, and performative embodiment but also empathy and observation. For Lockhart, it is the result of her collaboration with Eshkol’s legacy and the group of dancers and friends currently living and working in Holon.

The Noa Eshkol Chamber Dance Group will perform dances by Eshkol at the Vienna Secession on November 27, in a unique and one-time-only performance, starting at exactly 7pm until 8pm. This world premiere will be the first presentation of Noa Eshkol’s dances outside Israel since the 1970s.

Press Information
Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary
T +43 1 513 98 56 – 18 / press [​at​] /

The exhibition is accompanied by a publication with essays by Walead Beshty, Ramsay Burt, Noa Eshkol, Ifat Finkelman, Martina Leeker, Steve Paxton, Howard Singerman, Noémie Solomon, Frances Stark, Eva Wilson, Daniela Zyman and texts and documents from the Noa Eshkol Foundation.

Sharon Lockhart I Noa Eshkol
Ed. by TBA21 / Daniela Zyman, Eva Wilson
Design: John McCusker, Sara Hartman
Sternberg Press, Berlin
ISBN: 978-3-943365-55-9
Ca.170 pages, English.

*Image above:
Sharon Lockhart, Four Exercises in Eshkol-Wachman Movement Notation, 2011. Photo: Oded Löbl; © The Israel Museum, Jerusalem. Courtesy the artist, neugerriemschneider, Berlin, Gladstone Gallery, New York and Brussels, and Blum & Poe, Los Angeles.

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Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBA21)
November 19, 2012

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