Following Beijing-based artist and curator Liu Ding’s BMW Tate Live Performance Room Almost Avantgarde on 16 May, we look back at some of the comments and questions you asked in our live Q&A

1 of 4
  • BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013 live Q&A following live online streamed performance

    BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013
    Carol Yinghua, Liu Ding and Curator (Contemporary Art & Performance), Catherine Wood in live Q&A following live online streamed performance

  • BMW Tate Live Liu Ding live online streamed performance

    BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

  • BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avangarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

    BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

  • BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

    BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

Ding’s piece Almost Avantgarde brought together a small gathering of guests who chatted amongst a backdrop of giant cut-outs of artworks, a DJ mixing-up baroque music, an unseen Chinese voice and projected English texts in an online only performance. During the performance we asked you to chat with other viewers via our YouTube channel and put questions to Ding (as translated by art critic and collaborator Carol Yinghua Lu) and our curator Catherine Wood (who also took part in the party!) for a post-performance live Q&A.

Viewers from over 50 countries, from the United States and Germany to Japan and Brazil, watched Almost Avantgarde being performed live. Thank you for all your comments and questions!

Here’s video of the performance and below is a snippet of the live Q&A in case you missed it. And if you have a question not answered here, head to our YouTube channel and put your questions directly to the artist ahead of the next performance by Tokyo-based artist Meiro Koizumi on 13 June.

Catherine Wood
I wondered if you could explain a little bit about the texts …set against a kind of suggestion of narrative in the piece with scenes of people at a party with music in this room [the BMW Tate Live: Performance Room]. Can you say something about that back and forth structure, the binary you’ve setup?

Carol Yinghua Lu
In this project I have brought ‘friends’ into the party, and by ‘friends’ I refer to on one hand the experience I have gained through my practise and also ‘friends’ refer to colleagues that have helped in the realisation of this project. I think about two things: what we can share with friends is always very limited, and a lot of things cannot really be shared amongst people, amongst friends. So what interested me about this project about live broadcast is the fact that certain things can be shared through live broadcast and (at the same time), certain things can’t.

@Sarahlynnd
@Tate #BMWTateLive Fascinating! Wondering how I’d experience this if I was w/Liu Ding. Are deprivation/absence/remove part of the work?

Carol Yinghua Lu
Liu Ding is very interested in exploring the visible and the invisible performances and actions that are around us. There is one way of performing that the artists/actor is the centre of attention but in this piece he’s trying to explore the kind of performances that happen everywhere, spontaneously, without necessarily having a focus or a centre. He’s very interested in the performances and actions that are scattered and happen on different spots in the site because these performances, these actions, these presences often can actually affect our emotions - how we feel and how we think. These kind of performances are what he would usually would describe as ‘weak performances’, as in not theatrical, not very staged.

Catherine Wood
So it’s a form of performance happening within everyday life, almost like in invisible theatre? Do you mean in the site of Tate?

BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

Carol Yinghua Lu
Exactly, and not in Tate but in the everyday, a more general context. He was also earlier describing that these performances are like undercurrents that exist in our presence, in our living and often these kind of performances exist and inhabit other kinds of conditions. They are not isolated but they are also inter-related with each other. But the are not really part of the everyday, they are staged in a way, in this particular situation.

Elizabeth Austin, Texas
Has the public role of the artist changed in a world dominated by social media?

Carol Yinghua Lu
Liu Ding just said that he believes that technological changes such as the rise of social media would inevitably affect and influence how we relate to each other, how we practise. Often, these changes can bring inspiration. To make a work for this kind of live broadcast is the first time for Liu Ding, but this experience has allowed him to really think about what live broadcast really means, what kind of ‘live site’ is created by live broadcast.

BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

BMW Tate Live Performance Room, Almost Avantgarde by Liu Ding, 16 May 2013

AliKati
@Tate #BMWTateLive How important is the audience reaction/engagement to Liu Ding? Is he curious as to what else we are doing?

Carol Yinghua Lu
Lui Ding said that the questions that have been brought in reflect a certain reaction amongst the audience which gives him an idea about the audience. But having said that he doesn’t think he can really predict or really anticipate what the audience are expecting and doing exactly, likewise he also cannot predict what he himself, being the audience, what he would be doing during such a live broadcast.

Liz Bridges
The music’s wonderful, what is it?

Carol Yinghua Lu
It started with a very intuitive preference to baroque music that Lui Ding likes very much. Then he started to think more about why he likes baroque music, he realised he’s very much attracted to the repetition, the fact that the same passage, the same rhythm appears again and again so he decided to make collages, mixing different baroque music into his own soundtrack which appeared even more repetitive, even more concise, appearing again and again to amplify those features he likes about baroque music.

Get your comments and questions ready for the next BMW Tate Live: Performance Room by artist  Meiro Koizumi on 13 June 2013 20.00 BST and follow #BMWTateLive and @Tate_Live for updates