NORTH ADAMS -- On July 26, 69 Union St. will become the newest "pop-up" gallery to join the DownStreet Art festivities for summer 2013.
The former Gateway Chevrolet car dealership provides a truly unique atmosphere and space, both of which are necessary for this exhibition, which features large scale installations, archival footage and costumes and sets from internationally renowned artists/choreographers Eiko & Koma.
"Caravan Plus" will include a breadth of Eiko & Koma's visual work, including videos, photography and hand-made sets and costumes. It will also include The Caravan, a large trailer transformed into an art object/performance platform from the artists' performance piece "The Caravan Project," which will be performed by Koma on Holden Street throughout the evening on Thursday, July 25.
Eiko & Koma are Japanese-born choreographer/dancers who also create their own sets and costumes for most of their multi-disciplinary works. Their performances emphasize stillness and incorporate shape, light and sound in order to expose the audience to the vulnerability of their bodies.
"Eiko and Koma invite us to feel, remember and suspend time in their work as choreographers and dancers," said Sandra Burton, director of dance at Williams College. "They create and perform movement that reveals the poetry and the struggle in our journey as human beings. They are as well known for the beauty of their sets, costumes and the natural settings their work takes place in as they are for their choreography.
"Their body of work also includes groundbreaking collaborations with one another, photographers, filmmakers and other artists."
"The Caravan Project" is a mobile installation of a specially modified trailer that allows the doors to be open on all four sides to reveal the awe-inspiring environment that contains Eiko and Koma's bodies. At MoMA, where the project was installed this past January, the duo performed during museum hours for a week straight.
In North Adams, Koma will deliver a special three-hour performance from 6 to 9 p.m. on July 25.
Following July 25, The Caravan will reside in the newly renovated pop-up gallery at 69 Union St. along with featured works and artifacts collected during Eiko & Koma's 40 years of collaborative dance and art-making. Sets, costumes, videos and photographs are combined to create a multi-sensory experience that connects gallery visitors with Eiko & Koma's artistry.
"It's been a big project repurposing the car dealership into an art gallery," said Marli LaGrone, associate gallery manager of "Caravan Plus." "But it's going to make a great space for The Caravan and the unique works of Eiko & Koma. I'm excited to be a part of bringing the experience of their work to North Adams."
"Caravan Plus" will open at 69 Union St. on Friday July 26. It is free and open to the public. The exhibit will be open from noon to 6 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays, and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sundays, through Sept. 2. It will be available for viewing by appointment only through October.
For more information: caravan69union.wordpress.com, 413-664-8718.