The Julius-Hans-Spiegel-Zentrum is a mobile research center. Named after a forgotten deaf, Jewish and gay dancer from Berlin who performed in variety shows, galleries and film theaters with exoticist fantasy dances in the 1920s, its objective is to reconsider dance from the edges of the field. Eight international artists have developed new perspectives on the multilayered roots of contemporary dance at the Julius-Hans-Spiegel-Zentrum. Their point of departure was historic material that documents a suppressed aspect of European dance history: exoticism in Modern Dance. In the context of the Kasten Nr. 942n Exotischer Tanz weekend, six of these works will be presented in Sophiensæle and framed with lectures and historic films.

Dragana Bulut, Julian Weber, Sara Mikolai, Tümay Kılınçel and Nuray Demir focused on an archive box from the Lipperheidesche Kostümbibliothek’s dance photo collection. Kasten Nr. 942n Exotischer Tanz includes 26 photographs with dance motifs from the entire world. In the classification logic and history of the respective photographs in this assortment, it offers numerous indications of how supposedly naïve non-European “inspirations” for modern dance were tied into early 20th century colonialist and racist discourses. On the basis of this complex material, the artists in residency developed works that activate the excluded and make mechanism of exclusion visible – and thus transform our relationship to Modern Dance.

  • Client
    Julius-Hans-Spiegel-Zentrum GbR
  • Year
  • Artistic Director
    Anna Wagner, Eike Wittrock
  • Artists
    Nacera Belaza, Eko Supriyanto, Nelisiwe Xaba, Florentina Holzinger & Vincent Riebeek
  • Venue