Mikhail Baryshnikov Exhibits Photographs in Miami

The famed dancer has been taking photographs for 35 years and he hopes the exhibit help people to see dance the way he does

Mikhail Baryshnikov has been doing something besides dancing for the last 35 years: He's been taking photographs.

And he will be showing about 27 of these photos in an exhibit called "Dance This Way" at the Gary Nader Arts Center in Wynwood, which opens to the public on Feb. 24.

Baryshnikov is known as a dancer, actor and choreographer, but not many know about his love for the camera. He started taking photos of his family, friends and landscapes more than three decades ago.

"I took a little Nikon camera to travels around the world when I was performing, and I kind of got hooked," he told NBC Miami. "Luckily, there were a couple of images that I was surprised, they were not that bad. Ninety-nine percent was trash, of course."

Inspired by German photographer Ilse Bing and Americans Paul Himmel and Irving Penn, Baryshnikov said his photos of dancers are like making a "printing out of the movement."

"I really think of the result of it in a painterly way, what the Futurists used to do," he said. "You see the dancers' emotional experience."

This exhibit will show large, 6 foot photos of dancers as they perform, taking the viewer on the inner journey of dance and its movement.

"You kind of get on a spiritual trip. When the performance is over, you are kind of recovering," he said. "I take thousands of images and it takes me a long, long time to select. My eye catches it and heart stops. This is exactly what I want."

Because of his profession, he gets access where other photographers cannot, he said. But he takes photography very seriously. It's not just a hobby.He says he has gotten a positive response from well-known photographers like Annie Leibovitz, and he has shown all over the world, from Moscow to Jacksonville.

And he hopes his photos help people to see dance the way he does.

"When some people travel around, they write diaries, and some people write their autobiographies. I photograph," he said. "My particular journey, that's what I remember."

Gallerist Gary Nader said the prices of photos will range between $15,000 and $35,000 each.

"Imagine, he is one of the greatest dancers of modern dance. He understands more than any other photographer what the dancer is doing," Nader said.

Nader said he will be taking the show to Brazil next year.

Meanwhile, more than 100 works of art from major artists will also be part of another exhibit _ called "The Grand Latin American Art Show" _ on display at the gallery starting the same day as the Baryshinikov show.  Artists include: Vik Munez, Wilfredo Lam and Walter Goldfarb.

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