In January of 1973, Great Britain joined the European Union after its third petition for membership. The event inspired an array of celebrations entitled Fanfare for Europe.
It isn’t often that new works emerge from the depths of artists’ archives, but when they do, viewers are offered new perspectives on an artist’s work. This is the case with never-before exhibited video documentations of Minoru Yoshida’s New York performances, at Ulterior Gallery.
Miguel Gutierrez pulls down his underwear with critical intent. Focused and assured, he turns to the left with one yank, and then to the right, before re-joining the orgy of bodies, clothes, and fabric that dominate the stage.
The dancers slowly grow and unfurl upward before proceeding to spring around the stage to evoke the movement of the flowers.
The black curtains form a dark wall across the proscenium assembled at Performance Space. Green and yellow lighting washes through the haze above the audience. We hear the ribbit of frogs, the buzz of crickets, and the swampy whir of the nocturnal.
"To perform as a trans personits like: why be stared at by a group of people after experiencing that all day in the street? But theres a deep desire to be seenwhich is different from a desire to be watched."
Part of Performa 2019, which has taken the Bauhaus School as its theme, the festival commissioned (Untitled) The Black Act in partnership with the works venue, Performance Space, to explore the parallels between the 1920s German art school and the voguing practices of late 20th century New York ballroom culture.
The superstar performance artist, Melati Suryodarmo, returns to New York next month to perform Eins und Eins (2016) at The Armory Show. The piece uses the human body as a metaphor for a nations health and involves the spewing of black ink. Having been trained by Marina Abramović and Anzu Furukawa, Suryodarmo combines butoh practices with western performance art, merging her Indonesian origins with her time in Germany.
A specialist in self-portraiture, who often works with masks, Gillian Wearing has always been invested in that barrier between the private and the public. Here, shes severed, superimposed. Her flailing arms, her private dance, detached from passing crowds. The Peckham public barely regards herand she jiggles on regardless.
Center-stage on all fours, atop a kind of inflatable mattress, she thrusts her hips in slow twerking movements. Her pink lipstick matches the sides of the inflatable. The stage is a pale grey. To a gently spoken soundtrack, she simultaneously lip-syncs: 18 year old ass, 18 school girls, 18 amateur, 18 and confused, 100 percent neoliberal.
Catherine Gallant stands on the bare stage of the French Institute: Alliance Française (FIAF). For the next hour, she will address the audience, like a tour guide, introducing, demonstrating, and teaching the dances of Isadora Duncan.
Dance is often assumed to take place in a singular delineated space with specific bodies and specific movements. But these assumptions limit our understanding. Works such as these reveal that we can also dance with those not physically there beside us.