Photographs by Tom Brazil
Tom Brazil began photographing the Mark Morris Dance Group in their earliest years as a company in the 1980s, at Dance Theater Workshop and P.S. 122 in New York, and well into their recent seasons at the Dance Center and the Brooklyn Academy of Music. Some of the Dance Group’s most iconic performance photographs are by Brazil, who traveled around the country and internationally to document the Dance Group. In 1992, Brazil published Dances by Mark Morris, a monograph depicting photographs he had taken of the company since 1983, the year Brazil left his job as a picture researcher at Magnum Photos and began primarily photographing dance. Beyond the Dance Group, Brazil photographed well over 5,000 performances and served as the house photographer for many presenters and venues around the city over the decades. His work has been published in newspapers, magazines, and journals throughout the world.
We invited Tom Brazil to visit the archive in the spring of 2018 to go through his photographs of the Dance Group with us, and to talk about his work and experiences documenting dance over the last 40 years. The quotes in this exhibit are from one of those visits, as well as from an interview with Brazil, conducted by Lauren Bakst, for Movement Research Performance Journal, Issue 48 (Spring 2016), p. 30-33.
Tom Brazil passed away on January 29, 2022. It has been such a privilege for the Mark Morris Dance Group to be seen through Tom’s lens over the last forty years. We invite you to explore this selection of images from the over 120 print photographs and the hundreds of 35mm slides we have in our collection that express the vibrancy, beauty, and humor that Brazil and the Dance Group share.