In July 2013 Tate collaborated with London-based artist Harold Offeh. For this special artist dinner Harold invited guests to create an artwork together in the form of a ‘gathering’ that encouraged a unique kind of dialogue and exchange through a series of calls and responses. Guests were also encouraged to add to specially printed placemats to create their own unique gestures and symbols for communication inspired by Ghanian Adrinka symbols. A series of lively activities encouraged guests to develop ‘calls’ (questions, statements, comments etc) with spontaneous ‘responses’ from other guests. Call and Response is a form of communication rooted in African diaspora and other cultures. It often underpins social and cultural interaction, through art, dance and music. Using conventions of West African tribal gathering guests shared food, drink, music, conversation and good times.
The Call and Response dinner has been developed by artist Harold Offeh as part of Meschac Gaba’s Museum of Contemporary African Art on display at Tate Modern.
Harold Offeh was born in Accra, Ghana in 1977. He works in a range of media including performance, video, photography, interactive and digital media, often employing humour as a means to engage audiences. Recently Offeh has approached the themes of Afrofuturism and hair through collective live engagements with other artists, performers and community participation. He has shown widely both in the UK and internationally. He lives in London and works in Leeds where he is a senior lecturer in Fine Art at Leeds Metropolitan University.