Clément Cogitore: Les Indes Galantes

Sep 10, 12AM – Feb 23, 12AM

Working at the intersection of cinema, photography, and installation, Clément Cogitore examines ritual, collective memory, and notions of the sacred. Les Indes Galantes takes its title and music from a 1735 opera-ballet by French composer Jean-Philippe Rameau. The fourth and final section of the opera is inspired by a meeting in 1725 between six Native American tribal chiefs and King Louis XV, during which the chiefs performed several traditional dances. Cogitore pairs Rameau’s dramatic Baroque soundtrack with a style of dance born in Los Angeles in the early 1990s known as K.R.U.M.P. Spanning ages, races, and ethnicities, Cogitore’s dancers gather in a circle on a sparsely-lit stage to engage in a “battle,” a common K.R.U.M.P performance format. The filmmaker captures this scene from multiple vantage points—distant observer, audience member, performer—to immerse viewers in this tight-knit dance community.

Pictured: Clément Cogitore (French, b. 1983), Les Indes Galantes, 2017, color video, 6 min. Production: Opéra national de Paris – 3° scène / Les Films Pélléas. Choreography : Brahim Rachiki, Igor Carouge, Bintou Dembele. Courtesy of the artist, Chantal Crousel Consulting, Paris (FR) and Reinhard Hauff Gallery, Stuttgart (DE)

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