11 January 2013, 21:25

Washington National Gallery of Art: Ballets Russes celebrated

Washington National Gallery of Art: Ballets Russes celebrated

It was an artistic renaissance laced with unexpected collaborations: Henri Matisse constructed costumes and Pablo Picasso used a stage curtain as a canvas. The Ballets Russes, the groundbreaking dance company founded by Russian impresario Sergei Diaghilev, was at the forefront of European art in the early 20th century.

One hundred years after the company’s premiere of Igor Stravinsky and Vaslav Nijinsky’s “The Rite of Spring,” the National Gallery of Art will exhibit “Diaghilev and the Ballets Russes, 1909-1929: When Art Danced With Music,” from May 12 to Sept. 2.

The 135-piece multimedia exhibition includes costumes, paintings, sculptures, set designs, prints, film clips and the largest objects ever to be displayed at the National Gallery of Art: Russian avant-garde artist Natalia Goncharova’s backdrop for the 1926 production of “The Firebird” and the front curtain for “The Blue Train,” designed by Pablo Picasso in 1924.

Voice of Russia, Washington Post

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