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Choreographing LeWitt

Choreographing LeWitt

Sol LeWitt's Wall Drawings brought to life as movement, sound, and visual design by choreographer Abigail Levine and composer Dave Ruder


September 9, 2017Restagings No. 1: Choreographing LeWitt at Fridman Gallery

Posted by: Abigail Levine

Video documentation of the complete 30 hour performance work Restagings No. 1: Choreographing LeWitt

July 23-27, 2017 

Fridman Gallery

sound designer Dave Ruder

video and editing Esy Casey


July 4, 2017: Choreographing LeWitt premiere at Fridman Gallery

Posted by: Abigail Levine

Re-stagings No. 1: Choreographing LeWitt

Abigail Levine 

July 23-27, 2017 |  12-6pm

Fridman Gallery | 287 Spring Street

Abigail Levine interprets Sol LeWitt’s Wall Drawing #56 (1970) as a choreographic score, taking 25 hours over the course of 5 days to complete the 3,744 lines. Sound design: Dave Ruder. Choreographing LeWitt is the first in the multi-work series Re-stagings, which reads modern and postmodern visual artworks as scores for performance.

Sunday, July 23, 12-6pm

Monday, July 24, 12-6pm

Tuesday, July 25, 12-6pm

Wednesday, July 26, 12-6pm

Thursday, July 27, 12-6pm; Closing Reception 6-8pm



April 1, 2015: Video Preview | Kncokdow. Center

Posted by: Abigail Levine

After a week’s residency, we prototyped Choeographing LeWitt for an invited audience at the Kncockdown Center. Here’s a look at the work in progress, shot and edited by Matthew Bernard. 

March 20, 2015: Work in Progress showing | March 21, 3-5pm

Posted by: Abigail Levine

Join us tomorrow for a work in progress showing of Choreographing LeWitt in the monumental main space of the Knockdown Center. We’ll run the piece from 3-5pm.  Come by anytime.


March 13, 2015: LeWitt to Lucier

Posted by: Abigail Levine

Last year, I saw the premier of Alvin Lucier’s Palimpsest, performed by Joan LaBarbara with text by Lydia Davis. It was an intimate room, and the performance was stunning in the effects of its clarity and simplicity. (This is, of course, not surprising considering the artists involved.) I wondered if I could translate Lucier’s composition in some way into a choreographic score. What resulted was a week long installation, writing and then erasing parts of Davis’s text in Lucier-specific proportions.

This work is something of a cousin to the LeWitt project, both in its use of choreographed writing and in the transposition of an artist’s score from another medium into dance.

February 27, 2015: Choreographing LeWitt composer March 3 premier

Posted by: Abigail Levine

Join project composer Dave Ruder at Roulette for the premier of his Jerome Foundation commission: The Gentleman Sleeps, a work for five vocalists and five musicians about the congressional session that certified the contested 2000 presidential election results. Legislative procedures make for surprisingly moving poetry!

March 3 @ 8pm

Roulette, Brooklyn


February 24, 2015: Drawing Lines

Posted by: Abigail Levine

We’re getting ready to go into residency at the Knockdown Center in March. Wall Drawing # 56 has 2870 lines…

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Choreographing LeWitt is a durational performance installation by choreographer Abigail Levine and composer Dave Ruder, created by interpreting a Sol LeWitt Wall Drawing as choreographic score. Each line of a Wall Drawing—often thousands of them—is drawn by hand. Historically, the execution of the drawing was unseen, but as LeWitt remarked, the installation process looked quite like a dance. The proposal of this project is to present this dance for the first time.

LeWitt spoke of his instructions, rather than the drawings, as the works themselves. It is a small step, then, to propose to read these instructions as a performance score. By interpreting his instructions in this way, the work's emphasis shifts from the completed drawing to the act of drawing itself. To further transform the work from visual object to live performance, composer Dave Ruder will create a sonic realization of LeWitt's instructions, produced live by amplifying and layering the sounds created by the act of drawing. The transposition of LeWitt's work from visual to time-based media offers the viewer a visceral insight into the internal logic of the Wall Drawing, unfolding in space and time.

Choreographing LeWitt will be performed twice, once in a gallery and once on the waterfront of Brooklyn Bridge Park, as a featured project of Make Music New York's citywide festival on June 21, 2015. The gallery installation, performed by a single dancer continuously during gallery hours over an entire week, allows the resonant simplicity of LeWitt's work to fill a space on its own terms. In the park, the designs and sounds of the abstract composition—performed by six dancers—will be laid out against the city skyline and bustle of urban life, framing and absorbing the city in its performance.

We are working with an exciting group of institutional partners to realize this project. In addition to MMNY's collaboration, the Marina Abramovic Institute, a center for durational performance, is advising this project and will partner in promotion, individual fundraising, and documention of the work. The Knockdown Center has offered us an invaluable residency in January 2015, where we will be able to construct a wall to experiment fully with the technical aspects of the work and present an in-progress showing. Curator Nina Felshin and LeWitt scholar Erica DiBenedetto are advising the relationship to LeWitt's works.

In addition to her choreographic work, Levine brings her experience with durational performance, both as a creator and a performer for artists such as Marina Abramovic, Carolee Schneemann, and Pope.L, as well as her successful track record of choreographies for varied public spaces, to bear on this work. Ruder builds from his own electronic compositions and durational performances, as well as his work with award-winning choreographers Joanna Kotze, Dusan Tynek, and Kimberly Bartosik.

LeWitt's work provides the architecture in which to deeply investigate  interdisciplinary work. Each component—choreographic, musical, and visual—become functionally tied to each of the others, the choices of choreographer, composer, and performer each pushing the others into new artistic territory.

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Project Details

Start and End Date

05/05/2014 - 07/27/2017


Brooklyn, New York

Updates (7 RECENT)

Last Updated September 9, 2017

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Project Created By

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Abigail Levine

Brooklyn, New York

Abigail Levine is a New York-based choreographer and performer. Her works bring together the bodily specificity of dance with performance art’s experiments with time and human action. They have been presented in galleries, theaters and diverse public spaces throughout the US and in Canada, Cuba, Brazil, Venezuela, Mexico and Taiwan.  Abigail has created works for the Movement...


Marina Abramovic Institute

New York, New York

Role: presenting partner

Knockdown Center

Maspeth, New York

Role: providing space for development of work

Make Music New York

Brooklyn, New York

Role: Presenter

Dave Ruder

Brooklyn, New York

Role: Composer

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