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La Pocha Nostra in London: 100 Ways to Cross the Border

LADA is delighted to present Amber Bemak’s 100 Ways to Cross the Border (2022), a self-reflexive performative documentary on Guillermo Gómez-Peña’s extraordinary 40-year career of radical artistic practice alongside his international performance art troupe La Pocha Nostra.

Please join us on Tuesday 9 July 2024 at 7pm at Queen Mary University of London. LADA Patron Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Balitrónica, Artistic Co-director of La Pocha Nostra, will join us for the screening and deliver a performative introduction.

6.45pm – doors open
7.00pm – introductions by Ruth Holdsworth, Interim Director of LADA, Ria Righteous, Artistic Consultant of LADA, and Martin O’Brien, Senior Lecturer in Live Art at QMUL
7.15pm – performative introduction by Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Balitrónica
8.00pm – film screening
9.30pm – drinks reception

On the occasion of this screening, LADA is presenting a programme of events celebrating La Pocha Nostra’s extraordinary work, that includes an online event with Ria Righteous on La Pocha Nostra’s Live Art laboratory, a deep dive in LADA’s Study Room with Ansuman Biswas, and an event on Dangerous Border Crossers with performingborders.

In support of this event, we are delighted to share two additional films online, SF APOCALYPSE and La Pocha Nostra in Oaxaca

About 100 Ways to Cross the Border

At a time when the mainstream US and international media are filled with demonising stories about the US–Mexico border, 100 Ways to Cross the Border presents the philosophical frameworks of Guillermo Gómez-Peña’s sustained dedication to highly impactful and innovative artistic interventions on that border, reclaiming and ‘queering’ it as a laboratory for utopian ideas and artistic experimentation. Featuring exclusive footage from the post Mexican/Chicanx performance artist’s personal archive, the film also constitutes a unique portrait of being on the road for three years with his beloved troupe.

Length: 84 min
Director: Amber Bemak
Writers: Guillermo Gómez-Peña and Amber Bemak
Producers: Amber Bemak, Nadia Granados, Andrew Houchens
Editor: Miguel Schverdfinger
Original composition: by Guillermo Galindo

Guillermo Gómez-Peña

Guillermo Gómez-Peña is a performance artist, writer, activist, radical pedagogue and Artistic Director of the performance troupe La Pocha Nostra. Born in Mexico City, he moved to the US in 1978, and since 1995, his three homes have been San Francisco, Mexico City and the “road”. His performance work and 21 books have contributed to the debates on cultural, generational, and gender diversity, border culture and North-South relations. His artwork has been presented at over one thousand venues across the US, Canada, Latin America, Europe, Russia, South Africa and Australia. A MacArthur Fellow, USA Artists Fellow, and a Bessie, Guggenheim, and American Book Award recipient, Guillermo is a regular contributor to newspapers and magazines in the US, Mexico, and Europe and a contributing editor to The Drama Review (NYU-MIT), the Venice Performance Art Week Journal, and emisférica, the publication of the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics (NYU). He is currently a Patron for the London-based Live Art Development Agency, and a Senior Fellow in the Hemispheric Institute of Performance and Politics.


Balitrónica (US/Mexico) is a cyborg-feminist poet, performance artist, hereditary witch, 2nd Degree, Cabot Priestess, and Artistic Co-director of La Pocha Nostra. Since joining La Pocha Nostra, she has made a full-time performance practice that explores the ideas of ritual psychomagic acts, occult methods of transcendence, and the human body as conduit. In addition to her formal training in musical theatre and Victorian literature, she holds an MFA in Poetry from Mills College. Her performance work has been largely influenced by her time spent living in a 17th Century Catholic Convent in Paris with a Dominican Order of Nuns. Balitrónica has been touring internationally with Gómez-Peña since 2013 and currently resides between San Francisco, Mexico City, and the San Diego/Tijuana Border.

Access information

The event will be BSL interpreted. The film is captioned and accessible to both English and Spanish speakers.

Arts Two is fully wheelchair accessible. Should you have any particular access requirements, please email [email protected] and we will be happy to offer further support.

SF APOCALYPSE: A recent short film by LPN

Gómez-Peña and and La Pocha Nostra invite you to watch this recent short performance film in preparation for the upcoming screening of 100 Ways to Cross the Border. While the documentary provides a portrait of the troupe at a specific time, this short film offers a more recent example of La Pocha Nostra’s experimental performance filmmaking

La Pocha Nostra in Oaxaca

Since the early 2000’s the second home of La Pocha Nostra has been the city of Oaxaca, Mexico – the indigenous heart of the country. Our Mexican filmmaker Bruno Varela created this account of La Pocha Nostra’s days in the city. We feel this film – like SF Apocalypse – is an example of our collective’s recent experimental performance filmmaking

Banner image credit:

‘100 Ways to Cross the Border’ (2022). Film still

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