Image Story

A Closer Look at Secret Pastures

The Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company premiered Secret Pastures at Brooklyn Academy of Music in 1984 with a set of collaborators who connected the stage to the street. Smith created costumes; artist Keith Haring designed the set; hairstylist Marcel Fievre conceived androgynous brush cuts; and art-rock composer Peter Gordon and his Love of Life Orchestra composed the score. Secret Pastures explored politics, economics, race, and sexuality, depicting men dancing with each other, interracial communities, and shared labor that served people rather than business. Smith’s unisex, interchangeable costumes for the production expressed his own efforts to undermine stereotypes of gender and race.

Secret Pastures at Brooklyn Academy of Music, Choreographed by Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Music composed by Peter Gordon, Set designed by Keith Haring, Costumes designed by Willi Smith, Photographed by Tom Caravaglia, 1984

Grayscale photograph of five dancers on stage posing in dramatic manner with patterned tent in the background
Grayscale photograph of Bill T. Jones and Arnie Zane posed dramatically in front of a background painted by Keith Haring

Bill T. Jones and Arnie Zane, Promotional Photography for Secret Pastures, Photographed by Tom Caravaglia, 1984

Grayscale photograph of two dancers on stage posing in dramatic manner and holding hands; a large patterned tent is in the background

Secret Pastures at Brooklyn Academy of Music, Choreographed by Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company, Music composed by Peter Gordon, Set designed by Keith Haring, Costumes designed by Willi Smith, Photographed by Tom Caravaglia, 1984

Yellow poster for Secret Pastures with bold black outlines of figures, monkeys, a tree, and movement lines

Poster, 1984
Keith Haring (American, 1958–1990) for Bill T. Jones/
Arnie Zane Dance Company (New York, New York, USA,
founded 1982)
Lithograph on paper

Black-and-white typed invitation to the closing night party of Secret Pastures

Closing night party invitation, 1984
Print on paper

Tarp created for Secret Pastures featuring a garden scene and flowers with phallic stamen

The Garden of Radio Delight, verso:
The Beach, tarp, 1984
Keith Haring for Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane
Dance Company
Acrylic on canvas

Tent for Secret Pastures set painted with red and black outlined figures and energetic lines

Tent, ca. 1985
Keith Haring for Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane
Dance Company
Acrylic on canvas
Courtesy of Larry Warsh

Haring was a leading figure in the East Village art
scene of the 1970s and 80s. Best known for his graffiti
drawings made in the subways and on the sidewalks
of New York City, Haring’s work expanded to include
commercial products, graphic design, set design, and
clothing in the hopes of accessing a wide public.

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