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Cady Wells and Martha Graham: The Body and the Animated Landscape

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Abstract:

Sharyn Udall, “Cady Wells and Martha Graham: The Body and the Animated Landscape”

Martha Graham’s first original choreography was inspired by her trips to Santa Fe and Taos in the early 1930s. Much less well known is the time she spent in Santa Fe at the home of Cady Wells, with whom she established a rich and mutually inspiring friendship between the years 1947 and 1954, during the time when he was painting in an early abstract expressionist idiom and she was responding to similar ideas in choreographing dances that she created in response to the devastation of World War II and the birth of the Atomic age.

This paper will explore the shared preoccupation of Graham and Wells, who took profound inspiration from the landscape of the Southwest. Each believed that excavations of myth, ritual, and memory, combined with themes adopted from Native American and Hispanic cultures, could provide a foundation for their deepest creative impulses, which can be seen in their explorations of rhythmic abstraction in painting and dance.
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Name: American Studies Association Annual Meeting
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http://www.theasa.net


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p243481_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Udall, Sharyn. "Cady Wells and Martha Graham: The Body and the Animated Landscape" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Studies Association Annual Meeting, Hyatt Regency, Albuquerque, New Mexico, <Not Available>. 2014-11-30 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p243481_index.html>

APA Citation:

Udall, S. R. "Cady Wells and Martha Graham: The Body and the Animated Landscape" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the American Studies Association Annual Meeting, Hyatt Regency, Albuquerque, New Mexico <Not Available>. 2014-11-30 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p243481_index.html

Publication Type: Internal Paper
Abstract: Sharyn Udall, “Cady Wells and Martha Graham: The Body and the Animated Landscape”

Martha Graham’s first original choreography was inspired by her trips to Santa Fe and Taos in the early 1930s. Much less well known is the time she spent in Santa Fe at the home of Cady Wells, with whom she established a rich and mutually inspiring friendship between the years 1947 and 1954, during the time when he was painting in an early abstract expressionist idiom and she was responding to similar ideas in choreographing dances that she created in response to the devastation of World War II and the birth of the Atomic age.

This paper will explore the shared preoccupation of Graham and Wells, who took profound inspiration from the landscape of the Southwest. Each believed that excavations of myth, ritual, and memory, combined with themes adopted from Native American and Hispanic cultures, could provide a foundation for their deepest creative impulses, which can be seen in their explorations of rhythmic abstraction in painting and dance.


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