HERSTORY of the Universe@Governors Island

"Best Dance of 2021" The New York Times

Theater in Prison / Italy


photo by Fabio Manso

Choreography and Direction


photo by JulenPhoto

"Challenging the prevalent societal precepts about the nature of beauty,[...]this powerful film also makes visible an often invisible demographic..." - Dance on Camera Festival

Official Selection -
Santa Fe International Film Festival 2010
Provincetown International Film Festival 2010
NYC Downtown Short Film Festival 2010

"Ethereal with hints of magic realism,
this black and white short has a duality
throughout that is provocative and dreamlike,
contemporary and yet classic."
- 2009 Lincoln Center Dance on Camera Festival

""Glorious" - A.O. Scott, The New York Times


Herstory of the Universe@Dartmouth
commissioned by the Hopkins Center for the Arts at Dartmouth College
September 15 – 17, 2023


"In ‘Herstory of the Universe,’ Ancient Myths Are Brought to Life"

“From Imagination to Flesh: Richard Move with Nicole Loeffler-Gladstone”

IMPRESSIONS: "Herstory of the Universe@Governors Island"

Herstory of the Universe@Governors Island

"Best of Dance 2021" The New York Times

Richard Move’s mystical “Herstory of the Universe,” a series of site-specific vignettes on Governors Island in October, delivered some of the year’s most enchanting performances — and costumes, designed by Karen Young. As I watched PeiJu Chien- Pott (formerly of the Martha Graham Dance Company) bolt along a hillside path in a billowing orange dress, I thought: I will follow her anywhere. Her magnetic energy did full justice to the inspiration for her character, the Japanese sun goddess Amaterasu. And the intrepid Lisa Giobbi, as a hamadryad — a forest nymph from Greek mythology — seemed to defy the laws of physics with her aerial, arboreal performance, as she scaled the branches of a sturdy old tree, hoisted aloft with ropes. Perfectly at home there, she cast a spell... Excerpt from "Best Dance of 2021" The New York Times by Siobhan Burke

Conceived and Directed by Richard Move
Choreography by Richard Move with the cast
Costumes by Karen Young
Map by Connie Fleming
Stage Management by Donalee Katz
Public Relations by Janet Stapleton
Hair / Make - Up by Nicole De Santis
Project Assistant - Hilarie Rose Spangler

Commissioned by the Trust for Governors Island with support from:
Charina Endowment Fund
Stavros Niarchos Foundation
Donald A. Pels Charitable Trust

Made possible in part with public funds from Creative Engagement, supported by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs
in partnership with the City Council administered by: Lower Manhattan Cultural Council
NYU TSOA Dean’s Faculty Grant
NYU TSOA *This is Not a Drill* Fellowship
Harkness Foundation for Dance Project Grant.

The project was developed in residency at the Catwalk Institute.
Richard Move/MoveOpolis! is a participant in Lower Manhattan Cultural Council’s Residency program at the Arts Center on Governors Island and a resident artist of the Climate Museum on Governors Island.

Special thanks to NYPL for the Performing Arts / Jerome Robbins Dance Division and Nel Shelby Productions for video documentation and to Slobodan Randjelović for still photography.

The first performance commissioned by the Trust for Governors Island showcases six site - specific works created especially for six distinct sites on the island, designed to call attention to the island’s successful ecological initiatives and newly flourishing ecosystems, while highlighting its unique landscapes in the midst of one of the world’s most populated urban areas. The project leads visitors on an immersive journey across the iconic public space with installations that amplify the island’s biodiversity with a kind of kinetic biomimicry.
The title, Herstory of the Universe, refers to the remarkable resilience of Mother Nature and the earth’s ability to recover and renew. The first iteration, "Herstory of the Universe#1 @Parrish Art Museum (2014)" in Southampton, New York, was inspired by the museum’s architecture, building materials and natural environs, along with the exhibition, At Water’s Edge, Maya Lin’s visualizations of Hurricane Sandy’s storm surge around New York City.
Looking ahead to future iterations of Herstory of the Universe, the Governors Island commission serves as a template for forthcoming site - specific performances that are also free to the public and focus on animating sites that call attention to successful human interventions that may assist Mother Nature in her recovery in this time of crisis.


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