Ryutaro Mishima
Before And After The Performance


May 11-21, 2011


Before and After the Performance is a series of diptychs (paired photographs) of performing artists, one taken just before a performance and the other taken directly after the artist leaves the stage. The series celebrates the act of performing; it depicts the complex attitudes of the sitters as they echo the transient performances taking place. The use of photography addresses the problem of preserving the impermanent nature of performance as artifact.

“I have been performing in theaters for about 20 years. I am a part of the community of NYC dance/performance artists, and I have been taking photographs of this community. The sitters and I share a strong passion towards the impermanent art of performance. Our enthusiasm, effort, and dedication to these transitory moments are what I am seeking to capture. This project examines identity as well as things that are fleeting and ephemeral in nature.”

The series was exhibited during RoseAnne Spradlin‘s beginning of something. “Before” photographs were viewed by the audience before the performance starts. When the performance concluded, the audience then encountered “After” photographs, which replaced their respective “Before” photographs.