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The Disco Project Installation2021-20223 channel video1 hour, looped;
dimensions variable

Installation View, Greene Naftali, 2021

The Disco Project Installation marked the first time my work was shown in a gallery setting, giving me the opportunity to reframe a twenty-five-year-old dance for a new era in a new arena. I made The Disco Project in 1995; it premiered at New York’s PS122 and was performed only 15 times. The installation I created for Greene Naftali, and adapted for White Columns, reimagined the dance in the context of an art exhibition, augmenting video documentation of a 1997 performance with two additional projections: 1)  a time stamp that counted down the work’s nearly 44-minute run, helping to situate the viewer and gesturing toward the real-time contingencies of live performance; 2)  a first-person text I wrote for each installation that reflected on the circumstances of the current show. For the new text I used short, declarative sentences that mirrored the style of the text projected behind the dancers in the original work. The text recalled the conditions under which The Disco Project was made and pointed to the different economies and modes of spectatorship that distinguish dance from visual art. The Disco Project Installation offered a response to the problem of how to preserve and display dance in the visual art world.

The 45-minute recording of The Disco Project commenced every hour on the hour, while the new text played on a 4.5-minute loop that was not synchronized to the start of the video documentation. Consequently, the temporal relationships between the new text and specific moments within The Disco Project were chance determined and different for each showing. 

The Disco Project (1995) followed Not-About-AIDS-Dance (1994) in the progression of my work.  For both I employ projected text that provides nonfictional information about the lives of the performers. Created in the 1990s, AIDS played an inescapable role in the text of both works. Fast forward to 2021 and COVID-19, which reverberated for me with the AIDS crisis; considering these ongoing pandemics together raised comparisons between the reception with which each has been met (for instance: no Operation Warp Speed for an HIV vaccine, still).

From Disco To Disco, Greene Naftali, 2021
February 2-27, 2021

Looking Back / The 12th White Columns Annual - Selected by Mary Manning, 2022

January 22-March 5, 2022

The Disco Project premiered at Performance Space 122, December 14-17, 1995.


Choreography and Text: Neil Greenberg
Performed by:  Ellen Barnaby, Christopher Batenhorst, Neil Greenberg, Justine Lynch, Paige Martin

Musical Advisor: Zeena Parkins

Lighting: Michael Stiller


Video documentation of The Disco Project produced by the Jerome Robbins Archive of the Recorded Moving Image of the Dance Collection of the New York Public Library
Recorded by Sathya Production Services, Molly McBride, Director at the Joyce Theater, January 17, 1997
Viewing Link


Johanna Fateman, Art Forum, 2022

Additional Links

Text for “The Disco Project Installation,” 2021, Greene Naftali
Text for "The Disco Project Installation," 2022, White Columns Annual

Webinar on the Installation:
Neil Greenberg, Carol Greene, Sarah Michelson: on The Disco Project Installation, 2021

Installation View, White Columns, 2022

© Greene Naftali, 2021

© Frank Mullaney, 2021

© Marc Tatti, White Columns, 2022