Kitchen Dance is a conceptual short dance film that explores the multi-dimensional lives of women and their work. The project was inspired by the original Frankfurt Kitchen in the permanent collection of Mia and supported by the Minnesota Arts Board Artists Initiative grant.
Designed in 1926 by Austrian architect Margarete Schütte-Lihotzky (b.1897 – d.2000), the Frankfurt Kitchen endeavored to make women’s work more efficient, freeing them to pursue economic and personal interests. Approximately 10,000 units were built in the late 1920s in Frankfurt, Germany.
The Frankfurt Kitchen signaled changing domestic expectations and was designed like a laboratory based on contemporary theories about efficiency and workflow. In planning the design, Schütte-Lihotzky studied train dining cars and ship galleys. She also conducted time-motion studies and interviews with housewives to inform her design decisions.
Through modern movement, Kitchen Dance uses dance as a storytelling device to examine the complex demands women still face today in pursuit of their own aspirations at home and in the workplace. Women are still fighting societal and cultural constraints in order to freely pursue their goals and interests. Kitchen Dance conveys the push-pull of this central problem.
Kitchen Dance was a multidisciplinary collaboration, bringing together a variety of artists – including filmmakers, a choreographer, dancers, set builders, a composer, and sound designers.
Kitchen Dance was an idea that grew out of a coffee date between Kris and Maribeth in the fall of 2018. The idea grew from an in-person performance in the Frankfurt Kitchen to a conceptual dance film project. The expansive nature of collaboration pushed the creators to grow their skill sets and explore innovative forms of creative expression.