A collection of texts by the French-American photographer and filmmaker in which she reflects on her artistic practice and discusses her collaborations with other filmmakers, artists, dancers and choreographers such as Marina Abramović, Chantal Akerman, Trisha Brown, and Yvonne Rainer.
A single black-and white photograph taken by Babette Mangolte has come to epitomize New York’s downtown art scene of the 1970s. The dancers performing Trisha Brown’s Roof Piece characterize perfectly the wild spirit of the time. Choreographed as an echo of movement unfolding across SoHo’s rooftops, the dancers mimed the chimneys, water towers, and fire escapes which surrounded them across that skyline. Influenced early on by Dziga Vertov’s Man with a Movie Camera and the work of Stan Brakhage and Jonas Mekas, Mangolte began studies in 1964 at the renowned École nationale de la photographie et de la cinematographie in Paris, one of the school’s first female students. In 1970, having become disillusioned with the film scene in France, Mangolte moved to New York and became involved in the avant-garde film and dance milieus of the Kitchen and the Anthology Film Archives.