The Tanks, Tate Modern
1–2 February 2013
To mark to start of LGBT month this February, Tate presents a series of events in The Tanks at Tate Modern which considers pressing questions around contemporary sexual and gender politics. This two-day event includes films, performances and a symposium featuring work by Pauline Boudry / Renate Lorenz, Carlos Motta and Wu Tsang. The series seeks to highlight a range of recent projects by this vibrant group of artists, activists and thinkers who have shaped the discussion of sexual and gender representation into one of the most exciting and urgent cultural debates.
The series opens on 1 February with a screening, and artists’ conversation, of films by Berlin-based artist duo, Pauline Boudry / Renate Lorenz. This brings together three recent works where we see a host of characters portrayed living in defiance of convention, law and economy. The screening includes No Future/No Past 2011, a staging of punk archives from a period between 1970 and 2031, Charming for the Revolution 2009, a radical reimagining of the housewife set in Berlin Zoo and Normal Work 2007, a layering of labour, class, desire and drag. The event coincides with Boudry / Lorenz’s solo exhibition at the South London Gallery, Toxic Play in Two Acts.
On Saturday 2 February Gender Talents: A Special Address, convened by Carlos Motta, presents an international group of thinkers, activists, and artists in a symposium. These ‘special addresses’ will explore models and strategies to transform the ways in which society perversely defines and regulates bodies. The event seeks to ask what is at stake when collapsing, inverting or abandoning the gender binary. Here the relation between self-determination and solidarity in processes of systematic change form the foundation of a pragmatic, but also euphoric exploration of ways of being ungoverned by normative gender. With Xabier Arakistain, Esben Esther Pirelli Benestad, Giuseppe Campuzano, J. Jack Halberstam, Carlos Motta, Beatriz Preciado, Dean Spade, Terre Thaemlitz, Wu Tsang and Del LaGrace Volcano.
Carlos Motta and choreographer Matthias Sperling will present The Movers. This new work uses movement to explore the connections between collective politics and a sense of the individual. Thirteen performers will engage in individual decision-making processes, The Movers abstractly asks how self-determination is both a deeply personal project and continuously negotiated in relation to others.
Saturday will culminate in a screening and performance by Wu Tsang, a performer and filmmaker based in Los Angeles. This special event features the UK premiere of Wu Tsang’s film Wildness 2012 followed by an evening of music and performance. Wildness is a portrait of the Silver Platter, a historic LGBT-friendly bar on the east side of Los Angeles that has catered to the Latin immigrant community since 1963. With a magical-realist flourish, the bar itself becomes a character in the film. Wildness captures the creativity and conflict that ensues when a group of young, queer artists organise a weekly performance party called Wildness at the bar. Wildness received its world premiere at MoMA’s Documentary fortnight.