David Levine received a 2013 Village Voice OBIE award for his installation Habit, and was a 2013 Fellow in Visual Arts at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University. He was awarded a 2007 Kulturstiftung des Bundes grant for Bauerntheater, and a 2009 Etant Donnés grant for Venice Saved: a Seminar, which premiered at PS122. His work has been featured or reviewed in Frieze, Artforum, Art in America, The New York Times, The Believer, Bomb TDR, PAJ and Mousse, and he has published artists’ projects and essays in Triple Canopy, Cabinet, and Theater. He is the recipient of fellowships from NYFA and NYSCA, and is the Director of Studio and Performing Arts at Bard College, Berlin.
HABIT is a process-based installation that reorients the way we watch performance. It fuses TV production, durational performance, behavioral psychology, and realist theater into a project that asks basic questions about spectatorship, performance, routine, reality and realism.
Developed at Robert Wilson’s Water Mill Center, spring, 2010, and Mass MoCA in winter, 2011. Premiered in Toronto’s Luminato Festival in summer, 2011. Subsequent performance at P.S. 122 in 2012.
Text by Jason Grote, Environment by Marsha Ginsberg
“…I could barely tear myself away…within (the) synthetic construct lies the truth of human emotion.“-East Hampton Star
To challenge the very notion of performing, David created the critically acclaimed performance piece, BAUERNTHEATER – a production that combined elements of theater, land art, performance art and endurance art. American actor David Barlow became the farmer from Heiner Müller’s THE RESETTLER (DIE UMSIEDLERIN), and for a month plowed fields and planted potatoes for 10-hour shifts in a rural area north of Berlin.
New York Times
VENICE SAVED: A SEMINAR
an interactive play-cum-seminar in which actors (with Levine as colloquium facilitator) acted out pieces of Simone Weil’s great lost play, Venice Saved, while audience members debated the role of politics within American Theater, and political theater within American life.
Presented at PS 122
Levine assembles and displays thousands of unsolicited headshot-and-cover-letter submissions from around NYC. The installation questions the very notion of a “culture industry”, as well as the literal and figuratively wasteful qualities inherent to “the business.”
Presented in Berlin, NYC and LA
Art In America Magazine