A collection of video recordings from the Tate Modern study day Identity and Performativity, which explores the various ways in which performance has been used in recent art, focusing on a range of media including photography, performance, installation, video art and painting.

Identity and Performativity Study Day – Part 1: Introduction

This video recording is the introduction to the Tate Modern study day Identity and Performativity, which explores the various ways in which performance has been used in recent art

Identity and Performativity Study Day – Part 2: Gender, Performance and Play: An Introduction

This video recording is Session 1 Gender, Performance and Play: An Introduction with speaker Professor Gill Perry, Head of Art History, Open University.

Professor Gill Perry reviews some of the issues for the day, exploring the relationship between gender, performativity and play. This programme maps out the wide range of practices and theories associated with the labels ‘performance’, ‘performance art’ and ‘performativity’, providing a toolkit with which to explore some of the practices involved. Drawing briefly on the work of Gilbert and George, the programme addresses ideas of gender identity as ‘performed’ rather than innate, looking closely at a range of recent practices in which the artist’s body is the primary subject of representation - whether in photography, paint or live performance.

Further Reading

Gavin Butt, After Criticism: New Responses to Art and Performance, Blackwells Publishing, 2005

Amelia Jones, Body Art: Performing the Subject, University of Minnesota Press, 1998

Kristine Stiles, ‘I/Eye/Oculus:performance, installation and video’, chapter 5 of G.Perry and P.Wood eds. Themes in Contemporary Art, Yale University Press, 2004

P. Phelan, Unmarked: The Politics of Performance, Routledge, 1993

Identity and Performativity Study Day – Part 3: Factory Girls and Superstars: Warhol's Women in the 1960s

This video recording is Session 2: Factory Girls and Superstars: Warhol’s Women in the 1960s, with speaker Gilda Williams, London correspondent for Artforum and Lecturer, MA Contemporary Art programme, Sotheby’s Institute of Art.

Gilda Williams discusses the construction of women’s identity in Warhol’s Factory, which, despite being often described as a ‘boy’s club’, counted numerous fascinating, often beautiful women among its regulars, including Jane Holzer, Edie Sedgwick, Brigid Berlin, Ultra Violet, Dorothy Dean, Mary Woronov, Viva and innumerable others. Gilda Williams’ research looks at how many of the women in this pre-feminist generation forged an unconventional female identity via the sexually experimental context of the Factory and in their performances for Warhol’s camera.

Further Reading

Gilda Williams, Factory Girls and Superstars: Warhol’s Women in the 1960s

Callie Angell, Andy Warhol Screen Tests: The Films of Andy Warhol Catalogue Raisonne, volume 1, New York: Abrams, in association with Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, 2006

Jennifer Doyle, ‘ “I Must Be Boring Someone”: Women in Warhol’s Films’, in Sex Objects, Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2006, pp. 71-96

Kenneth Goldsmith, ed., I’ll Be Your Mirror: The Selected Andy Warhol Interviews 1962-1987, New York: Carroll & Graf Publishers, 2004

Ultra Violet, Famous for 15 Minutes: My Years with Andy Warhol, San Diego: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1988

Mary Woronov, Swimming Underground: My Years in the Warhol Factory, London: Serpent’s Tail, 1995

Identity and Performativity Study Day – Part 4: The Substance of the Subject: Representing Identity in Contemporary Portraiture

This video recording is session 3, The Substance of the Subject: Representing Identity in Contemporary Portraiture with speaker Lara Perry, Lecturer in the School of Historical and Critical Studies, University of Brighton.

Many of the starkest examples of ‘performed’ gender in contemporary art have been delivered through the genre of portraiture: the works of Cindy Sherman and Yasumasa Morimura can certainly be understood to work in this context. The interest of contemporary artists in exposing the machinery of gender performance and impersonation in portraits has contributed to a more general confrontation with what has been described as ‘the promise of portraiture’ to represent the ‘authentic’ subject. In this paper, Lara Perry investigates recent experimentations in the genre of the portrait, and explores how new modes of portrayal – for example, those using time-based media – respond to new models for thinking about subjectivity.

Further Reading

Gen Doy, Picturing the Self: Changing views of the subject in visual culture, I.B. Tauris 2005

William Ewing, Face: the new photographic portrait, Thames and Hudson 2006

Shearer West, Portraiture, Oxford University Press 2004

www.unknownsitter.com

Identity and Performativity Study Day – Part 5: Session 4: Just a Camp laugh? David Hoyle's 'Magazine'

This video recording is Session 1 Session 4: Just a Camp laugh? David Hoyle’s ‘Magazine’ with speakers Gavin Butt, Senior Lecturer in the Department of Visual Cultures, Goldsmiths, University of London.

In this presentation Gavin Butt considers the place of the sincere speech act within the discourse of contemporary politics and performance. He is particularly concerned to highlight the ways in which such forms of speech may often ‘misfire’, either as we fail to believe in them or as they leave us cold. Gavin Butt also explores how such earnest forms of utterance have been playfully reworked in the queerly sincere work of performer David Hoyle (formerly the Divine David), specifically his recent run at the Vauxhall Tavern ‘Magazine’. How might Hoyle’s work suggest a recasting of the terms of political address through the apparently un-serious pronouncements of post-camp performance?

Further Reading

John Langshaw Austin, How to Do Things with Words, Oxford University Press, 1976

Adam Phillips, On Flirtation, Faber & Faber, 1994Lionel Trilling, Sincerity and Authenticity, Harvard University Press, 2006

Jose Esteban Munoz, Disidentifications: Queers of Color and the Performance of Politics, University of Minnesota Press, 1994

Identity and Performativity Study Day – Part 6: Discussion

This video recording is the discussion, the final part of he Tate Modern study day Identity and Performativity

In this collection of recordings for the study day, speakers discuss the relationship between performance and ‘performativity’, and the uses of portraiture, self-portraiture and ‘the face’ in contemporary practice. They also explore issues of gender and the construction of sexual identities in the work of contemporary artists such as Andy Warhol, Gilbert & George, Tracey Emin and Sarah Lucas. Speakers include Gill Perry, Gilda Williams, Gavin Butt and Lara Perry.