Corrado Cagli and George Balanchine on Stage: An Artistic Collaboration. A conversation with Jennifer Homans and Raffaele Bedarida


December 12, 2023, 6:00 PM

General Admission: $15, Members & Students: FREE


Join us for a conversation on George Balanchine and his collaboration with Corrado Cagli, the subject of CIMA’s current exhibition. In the years after the Second World War, Cagli settled temporarily in New York City, where he engaged with the local cultural milieu. His acquaintance with George Balanchine, the co- founder of the Ballet Society (today’s New York City Ballet), blossomed into an artistic collaboration and into the staging of The Triumph of Bacchus and Ariadne, performed in New York in 1948, for which Cagli designed distinct costumes and the stage set.

An expert on George Balanchine and author of the Pulitzer Prize nominated biography Mr. B: George Balanchine’s 20th Century (2022), Jennifer Homans will examine his activities in those early postwar years, while Raffaele Bedarida will illustrate the complexity of the costumes and of the set designed by Cagli for The Triumph of Bacchus and Ariadne. Together they will delve in the historical and political coordinates behind the project, the role of Lincoln Kirstein, co-founder with Balanchine of the Ballet Society, and the importance of performance art at MoMA.


Jennifer Homans is the Dance Critic for The New Yorker. She is the author of Mr. B: George Balanchine’s 20th Century (2022), finalist for the Pulitzer Prize and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Apollo’s Angels: A History of Ballet (2010), finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award and among the NYT 10 Best Books of the Year. Homans was a professional dancer and performed with the Pacific Northwest Ballet before earning a BA at Columbia University and a PhD in Modern European History at New York University, where she is now a Distinguished Scholar in Residence and the Founding Director of the Center for Ballet and the Arts.


Raffaele Bedarida is  the curator of CIMA’s current exhibition Transatlantic Bridges: Corrado Cagli, 1938-1948. He is an art historian and curator specializing in transnational modernism and politics. An associate professor or art history at Cooper Union, he holds a Ph.D. from the CUNY Graduate Center, New York as well as M.A. and B.A. degrees from the Università degli Studi di Siena, Italy. He was the inaugural fellow of CIMA in 2014. Bedarida’s research has focused on cultural diplomacy, migration, and exchange between Italy and the United States. He has also worked on exhibition history, censorship, and propaganda under Fascism and during the Cold War. His most recent books are Exhibiting Italian Art in the US from Futurism to Arte Povera: Like a Giant Screen (London: Routledge, 2022) and Curating Fascism: Exhibitions and Memory from the Fall of Mussolini to Today, co-edited with Sharon Hecker (London: Bloomsbury, 2022). The English translation of his monograph on Cagli’s exile (Rome: Donzelli, 2018) was published by the Centro Primo Levi Editions in concurrence with the CIMA exhibition.


Light refreshments will be provided


Public programming at CIMA is made possible with the generous support of Tiro a Segno Foundation.