Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Carnival as Transformative Performance at Tate Modern, Curated by Nola Carnivalesque Theorist Claire Tancons



Coinciding with the Notting Hill Carnival, Tate Modern presents Up Hill Down Hall: an indoor carnival, a new performance commission guest curated by Claire Tancons that offers critical and artistic perspectives on Carnival. Informed by the history of the Notting Hill Carnival as it reaches a milestone half-century of existence, Up Hill Down Hall engages with Carnival as ritual of resistance, festival of otherness and performance art, and with the Notting Hill Carnival specifically as a contested site from which to reflect on notions of public space, performance, participation. It conceives of Carnival less as a theme than a medium and introduces practitioners across disciplines who draw from Carnival as a medium of artistic production and a form of social and political address. While signalling the importance of Carnival as a performance medium with mass appeal in the culminating of the massification of museum culture, Up Hill Down Hall inscribes these works within the politically conscious cultural legacy of the Notting Hill Carnival, born of Caribbean migration and metropolitan accommodation to the aftermath of colonialism, resistance to racism and the mainstreaming of multiculturalism and, ultimately, developed through cultural ingenuity and artistic creativity at the forefront of the formation of postcolonial British culture. More>>