Isadora Duncan at Madron Gallery

Event Type
Event Description

Jennifer Sprowl of Duncan Dance Chicago will present a talk about Isadora Duncan and her lasting impact on the dance world.

Madron Gallery’s Perpetual Motion (on view March 7 - June 24, 2022) explores the natural inclination of disparate artists and art forms to intertwine, inspire, and transform one another. Twelve of  Abraham Walkowitz's (American, b. Russia, 1878–1965) original drawings are exhibited alongside a filmed 2016 performance of Varshavianka, a work Isadora Duncan (1878 -1927) choreographed in 1924. The piece was presented by the Department of Fine and Performing Arts at Loyola University Chicago; it was staged and coached by Jennifer Sprowl of Duncan Dance Chicago, who is both a professional dancer and Duncan historian. In keeping with the spirit of 2022 as the #YearofChicagoDance, Sprowl will give a live demonstration and talk on Duncan at Madron Gallery this June 12th, at 2:00 PM.

Abraham Walkowitz and Isadora Duncan were contemporaries, born in the same year and raised on opposite sides of the country. They met for the first time in 1906, in the Paris studio of Auguste Rodin (French, 1840–1917). They would meet again while Duncan was touring the United States in 1908, 1909, 1915, and 1916. It is estimated Walkowitz created over 5,000 drawings of Isadora Duncan throughout the course of his career, endeavoring to capture the essence of Duncan’s movement. Much like her own character, the gestures and rhythms of modern dance Duncan forged were a force of nature. Walkowitz said of Duncan, “She has no laws. She didn’t dance according to the rules. She created. Her body was music. It was a body electric.” Though the sheer volume of Walkowitz’s drawings speaks to an obsessive desire to preserve precisely the spirit of Duncan's motion, the end result feels as spontaneous as the subject herself.

Founded in 2008, Duncan Dance Chicago fosters the education and appreciation of Isadora Duncan’s dance art technique through classes, performances, workshops, and community outreach. Artistic Director Jennifer Sprowl is also a founding member of the Isadora Duncan International Symposium, a teaching artist at the Joffrey Academy, and a faculty member at the Chicago Movement Collective. Sprowl was a principal dancer of the Isadora Duncan Dance Company in NYC and trained directly with Duncan dance luminaries Hortense Kooluris (1914–2007), Julia Levien (1911–2006), and Lori Belilove; all of whose education and training in the Duncan method can be traced back to Isadora Duncan. Sprowl and Duncan Dance Chicago performed in 2019 at the Isadora Duncan International Symposium, London, UK.

Madron Gallery’s inventory of paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, and prints showcases the breadth and depth of art in the United States from the late 19th century on. Known for its American Impressionist pieces, Madron also features an outstanding and constantly growing collection of modern and contemporary art, aiming to illuminate artistic connections across decades and centuries.

Running Time
Dance Styles
Modern / Contemporary


Madron Gallery

1000 W North Avenue
Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 640-1302