Visit by William Kentridge, artist, film-maker, & director

This is How the Tree Breaks 1999 by William Kentridge born 1955

William Kentridge, the renowned South-African graphic artist, film-maker, and theater and opera director, will be coming to Rochester on Wednesday and Thursday, September 18 and 19, as the 2013 Distinguished Visitor in the Humanities at the University of Rochester.

We hope that you will consider incorporating this visit into your fall courses, especially the screening of his films at the Dryden.

Among the events open to UR and Rochester community are these:

  • Wednesday, 9/18 at 8 pm at the Dryden Theater – a screening of the entire series of Kentridge’s works of experimental animation, “Drawings for Projection,” followed by a talk with the artist. Free to UR faculty, students, and staff. For more information, see the Dryden Theater website, Drawings for Projection at Eastman House
  • Thursday, 9/19, at 9:30 AM, lobby of the Todd Theatre, River Campus – a conversation with William Kentridge about his decades-long career as a director of theater and opera.
  • Thursday, 9/19 at 1:30 pm, in the Gowen Room of Wilson Commons – a panel table discussion with Kentridge’s about his work in the visual arts and film, with a special emphasis on its South African Context and the installation in Hartnett.
  • Thursday, 9/19 at 4:00 pm, in the Hawkins-Carlson Room, Rush Rhees Library – a public lecture entitled “Everyone Their Own Projector.”

In tandem with Kentridge’s visit, his video installation “7 Fragments for George Meliès,” with “Day for Night” and “Journey to the Moon,” will be on display at the Hartnett Gallery, Wilson Commons, from September 12-29, and a selection of his art books and flip books, with accompanying video, will on display in the front gallery of the Art & Music Library in Rush Rhees.

William Kentridge’s work has been seen in museums and galleries around the world since the 1990s, including Documentsin Kassel, Germany (1997, 2003, 2012), the Museum of Modern Art in New York (1998, 2010), the Albertina Museum in Vienna (2010), Jeu de Paume in Paris (2010). Kentridge’s production of Mozart’s The Magic Flute was presented at Theatre de la Monnaie in Brussels, Festival d’Aix, and in 2011 at La Scala in Milan. He directed Shostakovich’s The Nose for the Met Opera in New York in 2010 (the production traveled to Festival d’Aix and to Lyon in 2011), to coincide with a major exhibition at MoMA.

Kentridge received the prestigious Kyoto Prize in 2010, in recognition of his contributions in the field of arts and philosophy. In 2011, Kentridge was elected as an Honorary Member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and received the degree of Doctor of Literature honoris causa from the University of London. In 2011 he presented the Charles Eliot Norton Lectures at Harvard University; was elected member of the American Philosophical Society and of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, was awarded the Dan David Prize by Tel Aviv University, and was named as Commandeur dans l’ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication. In 2013, William Kentridge was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts by Yale University.

The visit of William Kentridge to the University of Rochester is sponsored by the Office of the President and the College of Arts and Sciences, with the collaboration of the Departments of English and Art and Art History, the Film and Media Studies Program, The George Eastman House Museum of Photography and Film, Rush Rhees Library, the Humanities Project, and the Selznick School of Film Preservation.

For additional information, please contact Professors Joel Burges (joel.burges@rochester.edu) or Kenneth Gross (kenneth.gross@rochester.edu) or view the 2010 MoMA retrospective of Kentridge’s work, “Five Themes.”

Yours sincerely,
Joel Burges & Kenneth Gross
Department of English

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One comment

  1. Normah Nordin

    I am a fan. William Kentridge opened the door that I have been looking for. Truly a great artist of his time.

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