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Deborah Willis: Reflections on Civil War

February 16 - July 20, 2019

South Two Gallery
Deborah Willis Civil War
Deborah Willis Civil War

In this video presentation, the lyrics to “Civil War,” a song performed by the folk singer Joan Baez, are expressed through the act of a waltz. Directed and conceived by NYU professor Deborah Willis and choreographed by dancer Djassi Johnson, the film presents a performance by Johnson and Kevin Boseman, dressed in 19th-century costume. Their bodies move in lyrical precision as historical and contemporary photographs are projected behind them. Antique portraits of the Civil War’s black soldiers and domestic workers overlay the dancers’ play on tension and resolution, bringing the collective memory of conflict to the forefront of modern consciousness.

About Deborah Willis

  • Funded in part by the National Advisory Board Endowment

Images: 

Still images from video Reflections on Civil War, directed by Deborah Willis featuring professional dancer and choreographer Djassi Johnson and dancer Kevin Boseman, courtesy of Deborah Willis.

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