Mimi Garrard has assembled works on video from 1964 to 2014, which span her prolific career as a dancer with the legendary Alwin Nikolais, as a choreographer, and later as a video artist. The program also features the work of Alwin Nikolais and James Seawright. It includes work created outdoors and in the studio, in color and black and white, from pure movement to theater.
Mimi Garrard studied and danced with Alwin Nikolais and his colleagues at the Henry Street Playhouse. He produced her concerts from 1964 to 1971. In the early 1970s she began touring under the National Endowment Touring Program, performing in colleges and universities throughout the United States as well as in South America. Her last concert for the stage was in 2001 at the Kitchen in New York City. On September 11, 2001 she saw the Twin Towers fall from 155 Wooster Street where she was living at the time. This was a catalyst for change and she decided to create dance for video.
In 2002, she began to produce half-hour programs for Manhattan Neighborhood Network, which gave the incentive to work consistently. She has created 148 programs to date. Her video work is also shown in festivals worldwide, and is in museums and galleries. This past spring she showed her collaborative work with James Seawright on the dome of the planetarium in Jackson, Mississippi in a biennial program honoring Eudora Welty. She received a life-time achievement award from the Institute of Arts and Letters in Mississippi.
Mimi Garrard acknowledges Alberto del Saz, Co-Artistic Director of the Nikolais/Louis Foundation for Dance, for providing the video of the 1964 CBS Video Workshop that featured Nikoliass works.
Above: images from the Nikolais 1964 CBS Video Workshop. From top: Clowns from Imago (1963), Carillon from Totem (1960), Mantis from Imago (1963), and Rooftop from Imago (1963) performed by Phyllis Lamhut and Murray Louis
Below: images from various videodances by Mimi Garrard