Tuesday, September 7, 2021

The Hemispheric Institute and BAAD! Present Naked Vanguard: The Arthur Avilés Archive in Motion


Streaming Live - September 13, October 13, and November 16, 2021 at 7 PM EST

  The Hemispheric Institute at New York University and the Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance (BAAD!) proudly present Naked Vanguard: The Arthur Avilés Archive in Motion — a series of conversations and performances in September, October, and November 2021 that will celebrate the publication of the Arthur Avilés Collection in the Hemispheric Institute Digital Video Library (HIDVL). The Institute is excited to welcome Arthur as Artist in Residence at NYU for Fall 2021. The Naked Vanguard series honors and recognizes the aesthetic and political legacies of this ground-breaking dancer and choreographer.

The Arthur Avilés Collection has been digitally remastered and includes video documentation spanning Avilés’ decades-long career. This invaluable choreographic archive will be preserved and made freely and permanently available to researchers, artists, and the broader public by New York University Libraries and the Hemispheric Institute.

Arthur Avilés is an internationally renowned gay New York-Rican dancer/choreographer. His work utilizes aspects of theater and dance, often taking the structure of stories from existing classics and reconfiguring them in order to express the felt, actual, and fantastical lives of queer Latinxs in the city.  Avilés was born in 1963 in Jamaica, Queens, and raised in Long Island and the Bronx. After graduating from Bard College, Avilés joined the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, and toured internationally with the company from 1987 to 1995.  In 1998, alongside Charles Rice-González, he co-founded The Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance (BAAD!). BAAD! is a performance space that blazed a path for professional art and dance in the Bronx and has garnered local and national attention for its work. Avilés has received numerous awards and honors, including an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree from his alma mater, Bard College, as well as a Bronx Recognizes Its Own (BRIO) award, and multiple New York Dance and Performance (Bessie) Awards.

The Hemispheric Institute Digital Video Library (HIDVL) is the first major digital video library of performance practices in the Americas. Created in 2005 in partnership with NYU Libraries, HIDVL began as an effort to preserve political performance works from the Americas, making these cultural documents available worldwide. This growing repository is a one-of-a-kind research archive that guarantees historical preservation and free access to over 1000 hours of video documentation.


Watch the conversations and performance on HemiTV.

Naked Vanguard: The Arthur Avilés Archive in Motion

All events are free and available to all and will be broadcast via Zoom on HemiTV.


Monday, September 13, 2021 at 7 pm ET

Origin Stories: A Puerto Rican Faggot from America

Join us for a conversation with Arthur AvilésLawrence LaFountain-Stokes (University of Michigan) and Ramón Rivera-Servera (UT-Austin) on the arc and significance of Arthur’s choreographic works, the politics of queer bodies in motion, and the relationship between community and the practice of dance and performance. Moderated by Ana Dopico.

Virtual Event

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_KeywYMckTZ2nvpsotg7Hhg


Wednesday, October 13 at 7 pm ET

Thinking Performance: The Maévas in Dialogue with Arthur Avilés

Listen in on an intimate conversation between choreographer Arthur Avilés and performers Elizabeth “Macha” Marrero and Rhina Valentin as they reminisce about the role of Bronx Ghetto Matriarch Maéva, a recurring character that appears across multiple dance works and whom the two performers have previously played. Moderated by Charles Rice-González.

Featured works include: Arturella (1996), Super Maéva de Oz (1998), Untitled #1 After Martha Graham (1994), 5 Star Dance (1994)

Virtual Event

Event and registration information:



Tuesday, November 16 at 7 pm ET

Legacy in Motion: Arthur Avilés Live!

Debut of a live (this performance will be live at BAAD!) performance of A Jamaican Battybwoy in America, with Nikolai McKenzie, a piece where Arthur Avilés revisits and reframes his signal work, A Puerto Rican Faggot from America (1996). The evening will reflect the original work and its new incarnation.

This live performance will be followed by a conversation between choreographer and dancer, who will discuss Avilés’ works and their continued resonance today. Featured works include excerpts of: A Puerto Rican Faggot from America (1996), Arturella (1996), Morning dance (2000), Untitled #1 After Martha Graham (1994), El Yunque (2004), Intoxicating Calm (1992)

          Virtual event

Event and registration information: https://hemisphericinstitute.org/en/events/the-naked-vanguard.html#nov-16

The Hemispheric Institute gathers artists, scholars, writers, learners, and activists from across the Americas. We focus on social justice and research politically engaged culture and performance. We share this work in digital archives and amplify it through dialogues and public scholarship, residencies, publications, and gatherings. Our dynamic, multilingual network crosses disciplines and borders, and is grounded in the fundamental belief that artistic practice and critical reflection can spark lasting cultural change.

The Bronx Academy of Arts and Dance creates, produces, presents, and supports the development of cutting-edge and challenging works in contemporary dance and all creative disciplines that are empowering to women, Latinx and people of color, and the LGBTQ+ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer) community.

#NakedVanguard #ArthurAviles #ArthurAvilesDance #BAAD! #BAADBronx #NYU



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