World-renowned photographer Lois Greenfield has been photographing dance for over 40 years. Starting her career as a photojournalist, Lois worked for the Village Voice capturing the experimental dance scene from 1973 to the mid 90’s. She developed a unique photographic style not based in capturing choreographed movements. Instead, Lois inspired the dancers to improvise expressly for the camera. With her split second timing Lois revealed moments beneath the threshold of perception. Radically redefining the dance photography genre, Lois has influenced a generation of young photographers.
She has created signature images for most of the contemporary dance companies, from Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater to American Ballet Theatre. Many of these photos have appeared in her two bestselling books- Breaking Bounds, (1992), and Airborne (1998), both published by Thames and Hudson LTD, UK and Chronicle Books US.
Her latest book, Lois Greenfield: Moving Still, from the same publishers, was released in 2015, and the accompanying exhibit has been on tour within the US and to Russia, China, and Colombia. Commercial clients have picked up on the metaphorical potential of her vision. She has created ads and campaigns for clients including Disney, Orangina, Proctor & Gamble, Pepsi, AT&T, Sony, Hanes, Raymond Weil, and Rolex.
Since her first show at New York City’s International Center of Photography in 1992, her work has been exhibited in many museums and galleries, such as the Tel Aviv Art Museum, Israel; the Venice Biennale, Italy; the Musée de l’Elysée, Switzerland; the Erarta Contemporary Art Museum, Russia; and the Southeast Museum of Photography, Florida.
Lois has been fascinated by non-traditional forms of photographic presentation. Invited to participate in “Le Printemps de Cahors” in France, she projected her images onto a 30-foot high water screen in the Lot River. Set against the night sky, the water turned her crystal sharp photographs back into ephemeral moments, making the live experience seem like a product of the imagination.
Lois pioneered the use of live photography as an integral part of a dance performance. She collaborated from 2003 to 2007 with the Australian Dance Theatre on HELD, a dance inspired by her photography. Lois was onstage shooting the live action and her images were projected real-time as part of the performance. This award-winning dance was performed to sold-out audiences around the world, from the Sydney Opera House to Sadler’s Wells in London, the Joyce Theater in NYC to Theatre de la Ville, Paris.
In 2014/2015 Lois was an Artist in Residence at NYU/Tisch Department of Dance and New Media. In 2015, she was honored with the Dance in Focus award given by the Film Society of Lincoln Center and the Dance Films Association, and in 2016 she received a lifetime achievement award from The McCallum Theatre Institute in recognition of her ground-breaking contributions to the field.
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