National Museum of Dance Collection
National Museum of Dance Collection
National Museum of Dance Collection

Steven Caras

Steven Caras began his professional life at New York City Ballet (NYCB) as both a dancer and a photographer. He was granted rare and complete access to document the company in performance and in the studio by his mentor George Balanchine, beginning in the 1970s. Considered one of America’s eminent dance photographers, Caras’s perspective as a dancer—distinct timing and musicality and discrete knowledge of the art form—is integral to his technique and artistry behind the camera. In addition to his record of NYCB, he has captured numerous influential troupes including Miami City Ballet, Pilobolus, White Oak Dance Project, Pacific Northwest Ballet, and STREB EXTREME ACTION. In 2000, Caras curated a major exhibition of his work at the Museum that reflected the full range of his twenty-three-year career to date. An American Mosaic: Dance Photos by Steven Caras featured nearly one hundred, color and black and white photographs of these companies and others such as the Joffrey Ballet, MOMIX, Ballet Florida, and Paul Taylor Dance Company, and documentation of artists including Mikhail Baryshnikov, Twyla Tharp, and Natalia Makarova. His iconic 1982 image of Balanchine, Last Bow, was a highlight of the installation. At the close of An American Mosaic, Caras gave thirty-eight color prints to the Museum.