In an effort to liven up its Department of Arms and Armor, The Metropolitan Museum of Art has invited 29 freestyle dancers from the South Bronx to perform in replica battle gear at the museum throughout the first half of the year. The dancers hail from It’s Showtime NYC!, a group made up of artists who cut their teeth performing on New York City subway trains and platforms. As part of the commission, members of the troop will don traditional chain mail, leather and armor while dancing to their own selection of beats and music. The goal, according to museum curators, is to reveal “unexpected parallels” between historical combat tradition and hip-hop dance culture. Of course, the series also highlights the ways in which armor moves with and protects the body.Read More
Out of nowhere, the clang of armor and the beat of hip-hop music boomed through a gallery at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Tourists who had been peering at filigreed shields and wrought-iron broadswords swung toward the sound.
There, beside a cluster of horse statues in armor, a dancer moved into a handstand — one-handed by necessity. On his free hand, he wore a gleaming silver gauntlet, which he shimmied off and placed on the floor so that it stood upright like the disembodied hand of a knight.
Above the medieval-style metal glove, he spun, he kicked, he flipped.Read More