About the Project

During the 2007 Armory Show, Creative Time presented the U.S. premiere of Eve Sussman and The Rufus Corporation’s video-musical The Rape of the Sabine Women. Developed largely through improvisation and filmed with a cast of hundreds, the video functioned as an allegory based loosely on the myth of Romulus’s founding of Rome. The piece was further inspired by Jacques-Louis David’s 1799 painting Intervention of the Sabine Women.


Sussman’s remake of the myth as a 1960’s period piece featured the Romans as G-men; the Sabines as butchers’ daughters; and the heyday of Rome allegorically implied in an affluent international summer house. While the Roman myth traces the birth of a society, Sussman’s telling suggests the destruction of a utopia: the intervention of the women is fraught, and the chaos that ensues transforms the designed perfection into nothingness.


Photograph by Benedikt Partenheimer




Eve Sussman and The Rufus Corporation

The Rape of the Sabine Women




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