One of the oldest classical ballets, 'La Fille mal Gardée' - 'The Poorly Watched Girl,' was first performed in France in 1789.
The ballet is a comedic pastiche of country dances and folk tunes about a peasant girl who falls in love with a boy who is not her widowed mother's choice.
The setting is a range of stereotypical pastoral locations - the lively barnyard, the quaint cottage, the picturesque fields.
Many choreographers have staged La Fille mal Gardée through the years. Frederick Ashton's 1960 version includes ballerinas dancing in wooden clogs en pointe.
The 'watching' in the title has several meanings. She gets into trouble because she is 'poorly watched' by her mother. Her character also represents an idealized rural trope watched voyeuristically for the entertainment of an upperclass urban audience.
Through the use of costumes and scenography, Bocanegra staged her own version of a romantic agricultural idyll and the watching of this peasant girl.
La Fille was on view at The Fabric Workshop and Museum in Philadelphia, PA, as part of Bocanegra’s 2018 solo show Poorly Watched Girls.