March - May 2019

This three-part series into the economics of dance and performance invites artists, dancers, curators, writers and viewers to discuss and workshop the material and discursive needs of live art. 

Thursday 9th May, 7pm
Raven Row, 56 Artillery Lane, E1 7LS

As the second part of the Poor Performance series, Art/Work Association invites you to share your experiences of working as a performer/ dancer/ curator/ interpreter in movement led performances. Developed from the public presentations given at the first Poor Performance event at Auto Italia in March, this session uses the format of a reading and discussion group to collate and share experiences of dance-work.

We will meet at the above time and place, and encourage you to bring small written testimonies/ notes/ scraps that you would like to share with other interested parties. These notes will form the basis of our shared reading and discussion. The atmosphere will be informal, there will be tea and wine. It is advisable to email ahead as we can print your contributions if you send them in advance, but it is also ok to come to the group cold.

This reading session was developed by curator Alexandra Symons Sutcliffe and Andrew Hardwidge who works with dance and choreography in various fields. It is intended as a preliminary exercise towards the production of a document that reflects the material and effective costs and needs of dance and performance, as well as the shared desires of performers, producers and audiences. However, all contributions are confidential at this stage and will not be shared outside of the group without prior permission. 

The Poor Performance series is a research initiative that looks at the economic specificity of dance and movement led performance and how visual arts organisations fund and facilitate these practices. It is a critical project which aims to organise and give shape to the imaginaries and ambitions that co-exist with cost. 

Thursday 7th March, 7pm
Auto Italia, 44 Bonner Road, E2 9JS

In visual art spaces, dance and performance are doubly impoverished. Theoretically and materially, live arts have lacked institutional support structures. The embodied labour of a dancer is expensive, and liveness as a category is resistant to the organisational processes of static visual arts. Performance presents a set of challenges that require their own strategies of production, care and distribution. Artists must eat, but dancers need more calories.

For this first session in the series, Andrew Hardwidge, Lauren A Wright and Alexandra Symons Sutcliffe will give presentations followed by an open and informal discussion. The series will continue on May 2nd with a workshop and on May 9th with a presentation, more details on both of these to be announced.

Andrew Hardwidge works with dance and choreography in various fields. His works look to entangle matters, stories and processes of embodiments through a parasitic practice of performance making, choreography, collaboration, interpretation, hosting, research, video, performing and writing. As a performer, Andrew currently works with Dragana Bulut, Stav Yeni, Adam Linder. 

Alexandra Symons Sutcliffe is a writer and curator based between London and Berlin. Her work focuses on techniques of reproduction in performance and temporal mediums. She has recently organised exhibitions and programmes at PS120 in Berlin, Jupiter Woods in London, Ma Ma in Toronto and ESSEX STREET, The Kitchen and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York. 

Lauren A Wright is Programme Director at Siobhan Davis Dance. She has over ten years of experience as a visual arts curator, writer and researcher. She was formerly Director of Programme at the Hepworth Wakefield and from 2010 – 14 was Curator at Turner Contemporary in Margate. She was Artistic Director and Curator of the 2015 Biennial of the Americas in Denver, Colorado. She holds a PhD from the London Consortium, University of London.