Discipline: Interdisciplinary Art – movement

Morgan Thorson

Discipline: Interdisciplinary Art – movement
Region: Minneapolis, MN
MacDowell Fellowships: 2012, 2018, 2022

Since 2000, Morgan Thorson has generated a body of work that questions the conventions of western concert dance through interdisciplinary collaboration. Engaged in critical dialogue with the form, and inspired by a subject, physical process, or point of view, her work honors the body as a complex means of expression as it relates to the site and community in which it is situated. For Morgan, dancing provides communication and connection to people, silence, rage, space, beauty, and itinerant imagination.

Some of Morgan’s accolades include a 2016 Doris Duke Performing Arts Award and a 2024 Commission from Great Northern Festival. She is also a Guggenheim (2010) and USA Artist Fellow (2011); and in 2021 exhibited Group Choreography at SIM Gallery in Reykjavík, Iceland. Morgan is currently developing a new performance installation entitled Sundowner.

While at MacDowell in 2012 she researched movement as notation for her performance work, Journeyman. This project was supported by the National Dance Project of the New England Foundation for the Arts. In 2018, she developed materials and practices for her performance work Public Love, a commission installed at the Walker Art Center.

During her 2022 MacDowell Fellowship, Thorson made field recordings of sonic nightscapes, engaged in nightly outdoor movement practice, created solo choreography prompts rendered in pencil drawings and photographs, and generated scores and prompts for group night dancing. These research materials and methodologies will be used to create a new performance and visual art work, Untitled Night / Solnedgång, for the Great Northern Festival in 2024.



Morgan Thorson worked in the Nef studio.

Nef Studio, the first entirely new studio built after 1937, was donated by esteemed photographer, explorer, author, and MacDowell Fellow Evelyn Steffanson Nef in 1992. Endowed funds for the studio’s maintenance in perpetuity and an annual Fellowship for photographers were given in addition to funds for construction. Mrs. Nef said she had known about MacDowell all her…

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