Library of Performing Rights: 2019 Commission Nando Messias

LADA is delighted to announce that the second recipient of the annual Library of Performing Rights commission is Nando Messias who will develop The Pink Supper, a performance project bringing together ambassadors from countries where homosexuality is still criminalised. The Pink Supper responds to a global political climate of renewed religious and political intolerance and violence towards queer people.

The Library of Performing Rights (LPR) was originally created by Lois Weaver and Queen Mary University London in collaboration with LADA in 2016 for Performance Studies international (PSi)12: Performing Rights.  Since August 2017 the LPR has been reimagined and reactivated, in collaboration with Lois Weaver, the artist and researcher Elena Marchevska and the Study Room In Exile in Liverpool, as a concept or approach to research and practice rather than a distinct collection and is available as a place of action, a place of knowledge exchange, a repository of experience, and a resource and a context that others can use to support and advance their own work both at LADA and elsewhere.

As part of these developments we have instigated an annual Library of Performing Rights commission. Through an open call for proposals artists were invited to propose projects that responded to the LPR and involved three core elements – a live performance/presentation, the generation of a new LPR item, and the dispersal of ideas or knowledge.

Further information about Nando's project will be forthcoming.

The Pink Supper is Nando Messias’ latest artistic response to the question: how can artists ethically respond to social injustice issues?  

“Having just returned from a visit to my native country, I re-experienced the fear which comes from being in a place where violence and oppression are such common part of daily life.” Despite its international image, Brazil remains the number one country for trans murders—a most shameful indictment indeed.

“I experienced daily abuse myself when living in Brazil. I know well what effects it can have on one’s life. It almost cost me mine. I am lucky to have managed to escape. But what of those who cannot afford to? The Pink Supper is dedicated to them. It is my way of telling them that they are not alone, or forgotten and that I understand their suffering because I have been there too.”

For The Pink Supper, Nando invites 12 ambassadors from countries where homosexuality is criminalised, and with which the United Kingdom maintains diplomatic relationships, to sit around the table with him for a pink meal. Will they turn up? You are invited too. Performances happen promptly between courses. Wear pink… Wear whatever you like, actually.

Nando Messias' work straddles performance art, dance and theatre. His performances combine beautiful images with a fierce critique of gender, visibility and violence. He has performed at prestigious venues such as Hayward Gallery, V&A, Tate Gallery, Roundhouse, RVT and ICA, among other spaces across the UK. He has also worked extensively on the international circuit.

As well as a practitioner, Nando is movement director and a para-academic of queer theory and performance. Nando’s publications include ‘Sissy that Walk: The Sissy’s Progress’ in "Queer Dramaturges" (2016), ’visibility: Performance and Activism’ in "Performing Interdiscisplinarity" (2017) and ‘Injurious Acts: a Struggle With Sissy in Performance’ in "Choros International Dance Journal" (2018). He created a LADA Study Room Guide entitled “Sissy: a Study Room Guide on effeminacy, queer visibility and social violence” (2018).

Nando’s solo work has been curated by the LADA as part of ‘Just Like a Woman,’ shown in the City of Women Festival (2013), New York and London (2015). His sissy series toured the country to much acclaim and press interest.

The LPR commission is part of LADA’s Restock Rethink Reflect Four on Managing the Radical (2019 - 2021), and is additionally supported by South Bank University and The Study Room In Exile.