Orchestra to celebrate the opening of Govett-Brewster Art Gallery — 08.07.15

A celebration of the opening of Govett-Brewster Art Gallery/Len Lye Centre, New Plymouth on 25th July

Voxy.co.nz, Wednesday 8th July 2015 The Govett-Brewster Art Gallery/Len Lye Centre opens in New Plymouth on 25 July with special performances from members of the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra accompanying artist Len Lye’s cinematic and kinetic sculpture works. The Govett-Brewster Art Gallery has developed a special musical programme with the APO performing throughout the opening Saturday in the new Len Lye Centre. The performances will touch on well known connections between Lye and the musical world and showcase rarely performed pieces.
New Zealand’s contemporary art museum, the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, re-opens the weekend 25-26 July after two years of closure for earthquake strengthening, upgrades and construction of the Len Lye Centre.
On Saturday morning the new Len Lye Centre galleries will play host to a series of short performances celebrating the joy of rhythm and motion combined - setting music inspired by or loved by Len Lye, alongside his own wonderful works.
Music permeates much of Lye’s oeuvre, from the jazz and Latin standards he translated in film, to his dancing, ‘singing’ kinetic sculptures.
Govett-Brewster Art Gallery/Len Lye Centre Director Simon Rees says the Govett-Brewster is constantly looking for productive cultural partnerships - across art forms including music - to broaden the scope of what it does, the understanding of contemporary art and, in this case, the work of Len Lye.
"Working with the APO to present this programme enhances our picture of Len Lye as someone who used music so thoroughly in and around his own practice".
"The APO and its musicians have a long history with the musical world of Len Lye so it's a pleasure to take them up on their generous offer and present what will be one of the highlights of our opening weekend," Simon Rees says.
The new Len Lye Centre Cinema launches its cinematic journey with a screening of Lye's first film, Tusalava (1929) and a beautifully conserved film by Leon Narbey, documenting his own exhibition, Real Time, at the 1970 opening of the Govett-Brewster. With the APO Lye’s Tusalava is presented as it is rarely seen, with a live, two piano score.
Also in the cinema, Light Rhythms: Music from the World of Len Lye is a short programme of film and music showcasing the modernist music that surrounded Lye and his life. It includes rare pieces including a performance of work by Lye's friend and collaborator the Australian composer Jack Ellitt, and Lye's rhapsodic film All Souls Carnival with its Henry Brant score performed live for the first time since 1958.
Music that inspired Lye and that Lye himself inspired completes the programme, including a film performance of Eve DeCastro-Robinson's Len Dances.
Five APO musicians will come together in the gallery’s cinema and perform live the soundtracks to both Tusalava and All Souls Carnival, with works by Brandt, Ellitt, Eugene Goossens and Erik Satie.
The musicians will also perform a number of solo works alongside Lye’s sculptures, featuring works by Ravel, Satie, Honegger, Joplin and DeCastro-Robinson.
The APO musicans are James Jin (violin), Eliah Sakakushev-von Bismarck (cello), Kathryn Moorhead (flute) Emma Sayers (piano), and Tatiana Lanchtchnikov (piano and accordion).
APO Chief Executive Barbara Glaser says the performances will be an engaging addition to the opening day festivities. "We are proud to be a part of the opening of such a magnificent art museum of national and international significance," Ms Glaser says. "Many of the works played by our musicians in this performance are rare musical gems, and to hear them performed alongside the artworks relevant to the music will be a real treat for everyone."
Founding Films: Len Lye's Tusalava and Leon Narbey's A Film of Real Time. A Light-Sound Environment screens at 11:30am (duration 45 min)
Light Rhythms: Music from the World of Len Lye screens at 2.30pm and 4pm (duration 60 min)
All the events are free, although seating capacity is limited.
Film materials are preserved and supplied by The New Zealand Archive of Film, Television and Sound Nga Taonga Whitiahua Me Nga Taonga Korero.