Musical Box depicting well-known art and ballet critic's obsession with famous dancer Rudolf Nureyev; artist Australian painter Deborah MacMillan; collage and assemblage mounted in a shoe box created 1979; theme tune of Swan Lake

Photo © Michael Werner

Music Box

In this bizarre set-up the couple is portrayed wearing masks of Rudolf Nureyev to emphasize what had been perceived among some ballet insiders as overzealous and ambiguous attention to the dancer. The critic is shown as a brazen physiotherapist, specialized in therapeutic massage, to convey, by satiric implication, the sort of speculation and rumour that were circulating.

Assembled in a shoe box with a concealed musical device, the scene is a 3-D collage of magazine cut-outs from a reportage about Ken Russell's biographic film Valentino, starring Rudolf Nureyev as Rudolph Valentino.