Memory at Work: Rosemary Butcher in the Present Tense (2016)

Rosemary Butcher: The Site (1983), performers Gaby Agis, Dennis Greenwood, Sue MacLennan

Organised by Kirsty Alexander, Lauren Potter and Stephanie Sachsenmaier, this event offered a shared space for remembering Butcher and her work, and traced the legacies of this key British choreographer of the 20th and 21st centuries through those who connected with her at different points in her career.

It featured a roundtable discussion with dancers and other artists who worked with Butcher, including Elena Giannotti, Sue MacLennan, Lauren Potter and Cathy Lane. Further events included presentations by Ramsay Burt, Susan Melrose and Stefanie Sachsenmaier as well as works by dance artists who have been influenced by Butcher including Rahel Vonmoos, Susan Sentler, Bettina Neuhaus and Katye Coe. We were also excited to show Butcher’s film Vanishing Point, and a new film emerging out of her most recent live work, The Test Pieces, edited by Sam Williams.

About Rosemary Butcher
Over four decades, leading up to July 2016 when she left us, British choreographer Rosemary Butcher made radical and innovative works that crossed the disciplines of choreography and visual arts. After returning to the UK from New York in the 1970s, Butcher often explored non-theatrical spaces – galleries, architectural and open sites – for presenting her works, and has worked with designers, film-makers and dancers, making key choreographic films including Vanishing Point and SCAN. She staged Women and Memory in 2005 at Tate Modern, signaling the interface she had forged between visual arts and dance. She is known for her collaborations with established artists, architects, designers and musicians, including Dieter Pietsch and Michael Nyman. For her choreographies Butcher worked consistently and repeatedly with established dance artists, and through her teaching in the UK and overseas, her work has influenced several generations of practitioners. She was a frequent collaborator with ID, leading many iterations of her Critical Pathways project supporting artists in choreographic new work, among other projects.

This British artist is an icon of the New Dance movement. Radically, uncompromisingly and indefatigably expanding the limits of dance”

– Suddeutsche Zeitung

Minus 4, a film for Rosemary by Gaby Agis and Silvy Panet-Raymond for Memory at Work : Rosemary Butcher in the Present Tense is viewable here