Behind The Scenes

Making The Squash

Take a look at the how we made The Squash, from artist studio visit to the final build

The Inspiration

A person dressed a squash lying among vines

Erick Hawkins in his original production of 8 Clear Places (squash),New York 1960

Courtesy of The Erick Hawkins Dance Foundation, Inc,

Photo: Daniel Kramer

Each element of The Squash has evolved from Anthea Hamilton’s interest in a photo she found in a book whilst at art school. The costume in the image is modelled on the Squash Kachina of the Hopi culture.


Patterned waistcoat used as a reference garment for the marble leather pumpkin costume © Tate, courtesy Anthea Hamilton 2018

The Costumes

Anthea designed seven costumes for the performers based on different squashes.

The costumes have been made in collaboration with Creative Director Jonathan Anderson at the fashion house LOEWE, with Anthea working closely with Jonathan to realise her ideas.

people tailor a costume in front of a mirror

The seven costumes feature tracksuits, nightgowns, boleros and a codpiece. Many elements are hand painted in textures inspired by squashes, and lots of the fabrics feature custom prints.

Glove and cod piece on a table.

Samples of fibreglass heads, printed leather glove and braided cord cod piece

The Sculptures

Anthea selected 11 sculptures from the Tate collection to feature in the installation. They are each placed on the tiled plinths, which have been custom built to display them. The two main things she focused on when selecting the sculptures were organic form and natural colour.

The Installation

The installation took 25 days to complete. Watch our time-lapse to see how it all came together:

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Timelapse by Alexey Moskvin

The Squash

Anthea Hamilton has transformed the Duveens galleries. The immersive space she has created is the stage for a performer who inhabits the space daily during gallery opening hours.


Anthea Hamilton The Squash © Tate (Seraphina Neville) 2018

Each performer selects their outfit for the day from the collection of seven costumes, and use the empty plinths and the areas around them to perform in.


Anthea Hamilton The Squash © Tate (Seraphina Neville) 2018

Intrigued? Come and see The Squash daily at Tate Britain until 7 October 2018

Find out more

Supported by


With additional support from Midge and Simon Palley.

Costumes designed by Anthea Hamilton in collaboration with LOEWE.