January 24, 2013 - Tate Modern - Charming for the Revolution: A Congress for Gender Talents and Wildness
January 24, 2013

Charming for the Revolution: A Congress for Gender Talents and Wildness

© Carlos Motta.

Charming for the Revolution: A Congress for Gender Talents and Wildness
1–2 February 2013

The Tanks at Tate Modern
Bankside, London SE1 9TG, UK

T +44 (0)207 887 8888

www.tate.org.uk

A collaboration between Tate Modern and Electra

Charming for the Revolution is an experimental congress of artists, activists and thinkers who seek to unpick underpinning, pressing questions of contemporary sexual and gender politics; exploring strategies that divert and destabilise normative gender and its representations. The series of events gathers several major international figures who explore radical expressions of sexuality and gender. Their work invokes what Kathy Acker called the ‘languages of wonder, not of judgment’ to imagine new paths to liberation and social justice. This constellation of events at Tate Modern will highlight a range of positions, representations and manifestos to assess and debate an exciting, emerging field of shifting identities, active communities and political dreams.

The series features films, performance and a major international symposium and brings together the UK premiere of Wu Tsang‘s award-winning film Wildness alongside a new performance by Kelela, Ashland Mines, and Wu Tsang; a symposium convened by Carlos Motta with Xabier ArakistainGiuseppe Campuzano, J. Jack Halberstam, Esben Esther Pirelli Benestad, Beatriz Preciado, Dean Spade, Terre Thaemlitz, Wu Tsang, Del LaGrace Volcano and Campbell X; a new performance by Carlos Motta and Matthias Sperling; and a screening of works by Pauline Boudry/Renate Lorenz.

Pauline Boudry/Renate Lorenz 
Friday 1 February, 19h 
The work of Berlin-based artist duo Pauline Boudry/Renate Lorenz reflects on the interplay of sexuality, sexual perversions and representation, continuously returning to unrepresented or illegible moments in history. This screening and artists’ conversation brings together three recent works by Boudry/Lorenz: a staging of punk archives from a period between 1970 and 2031 in No Future/No Past; a radical reimagining of the housewife set in Berlin Zoo in Charming for the Revolution; and a layering of labour, class, desire and drag in Normal Work. Here a host of characters are portrayed, living—indeed thriving—in defiance of convention, law and economy.

Gender Talents: A Special Address
Saturday 2 February, 10.30–16.30h
Gender Talents: A Special Address, convened and moderated by artist Carlos Motta, presents an international group of thinkers, activists and artists in a symposium that uses the manifesto as a structure. These ‘special addresses’ will explore models and strategies that transform the ways in which society perversely defines and regulates bodies. The event asks what is at stake when collapsing, inverting or abandoning the gender binary.

Participants: Xabier ArakistainGiuseppe Campuzano, J. Jack Halberstam, Carlos Motta, Esben Esther Pirelli Benestad, Beatriz Preciado, Dean Spade, Terre Thaemlitz, Wu Tsang, Del LaGrace Volcano, and Campbell X.

Carlos Motta and Matthias Sperling: The Movers  
Saturday 2 February, 16.30h
Free
The Movers is a performance conceived in collaboration between Carlos Motta and choreographer Matthias Sperling. The work attends to movement as a means of exploring the connections between collective politics and a sense of the individual. Based on a choreographic score of performative tasks that engage thirteen performers 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.

Performers: Ingo Andersson – Wotever World, Jason Barker, Dan Daw, Simon Foxall, Fred Gehrig, Nia Hughes, Jamila Johnson Small, Helka Kaski, Huai-Chih Liang, Vicky Malin, Malinda Mukuma, Carlos Maria Romero, and Mickel Smithen & Ebony Rose Dark.

The Movers is part of Gender Talents, a Creative Capital Project.

Wu Tsang: Wildness
Saturday 2 February, 20h
Wildness is a portrait of the Silver Platter, a historic bar on the eastside of Los Angeles that has catered to the Latin immigrant and queer community since 1963. With a touch of magical realism, the bar itself becomes a character in the film. Voiced by a transgender actress from Guatemala, it whispers the histories of the LGBT community for whom it has provided sanctuary and a ‘safe space’ for generations.

The film captures the creativity and conflict that ensue when a group of young, queer artists of colour (Wu Tsang, DJs NGUZUNGUZU and Total Freedom) organise a weekly performance party, also called Wildness, at the bar. This emergent underground interfaces with the immigrant transwomen who have long populated the venue and the Silver Platter becomes a charged forum for forging coalitions and exploring class, community and activism.

Kelela, Ashland Mines, and Wu Tsang: Breakdown
Saturday 2 February, 21.30h
Free
Breakdown is a performance conceived for the Tanks by Kelela, Ashland Mines, and Wu Tsang. Part grand illusion and part humble direct action, this stage show is meant to explore the idea of honesty. Honesty not in the sense of being morally upright, but in the sense of being true to desires or needs. The artists use basic elements of voice, sound, and light to create continuity (storytelling) through a series of constructions/breakdowns, in which the song is simultaneously the derivative and the original. Breakdown is part of an ongoing series of parties/sound/experiences that began in Los Angeles.

A combined ticket for all events is available.
Tate Film is supported by Maja Hoffmann / LUMA Foundation. 
Electra is supported by Arts Council England.
Realised with the kind support of Creative Capital, IFA The Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen and the Norwegian Embassy.

Charming for the Revolution: A Congress for Gender Talents and Wildness at Tate Modern
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