Doris Duke Artist Award, 2015
New York, NY
In 1984, Stephen Petronio’s self-named company set out to explore the intuitive and complex nature of the body through movement. He has collaborated with a wide range of artists, most recently with hip-hop musician Clams Casino on Locomotor (2014), which investigated directional pulls within the body, moving the dancers in zigzags and dizzying circular patterns. Based on death and resurrection, his installation Like Lazarus Did (2013) featured a body suspended above the audience (Living Sculpture by artist Janine Antoni), dancers in white dresses, and depicted him as the death figure in a black suit. He has received many international commissions, including The Scottish Ballet and National Dance Company of Wales. His accolades include multiple NEFA National Dance Project grants, a Bessie Award, and a Guggenheim Fellowship (1998). His memoir, Confessions of a Motion Addict, was published in 2014. This year, he launches Bloodlines, a five-year initiative in which his company will commemorate works by trailblazing choreographers like Merce Cunningham and Trisha Brown through performance.