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DIY: 2014 – Harold Offeh ‘Call and Response’

A workshop exploring the history of performance practices through physical and performative responses.

The deadline for this project has now passed.

Project summary:
A workshop in which 15 self-identified artists – emerging, mid-career or recently graduated – will explore a history of performance practices through physical, performative and playful acts that will allow the development of a range of responses.

The workshop will use the structure of Call and Response, a form of communication rooted in African diaspora but also found in other cultures. It often underpins social and cultural interaction, through art, dance and music, think hip-hop, Gospel and Jazz. The workshop is intended to be a social and communal ‘gathering’ that will allow dialogue and exchange between different individuals. Activities will encourage participants to develop ‘calls’ (actions, provocations, questions, statements, comments etc.) with the aim to elicit ‘responses’ from other participants and a wider audience. Using conventions of West African tribal gathering, guests will share food, drink, music, conversation practice and good times in Manchester over 1 evening and 2 days.

The aim is to create convivial and responsive environment for artists to engage with their peers, guest practitioners, historical/archival documentation of Live Art and performance work.

Activities will include:

Introduction and Exchange

An introduction to individuals practice and an initial exchange of influences


The group will examine archival/documentation, through strategies of re-performance and interpretation. There will be a playful exploration of instructional works, responding to historical material and generating new work in response.

Artists may include William Pope L, Valie Export, Ana Mendiata, Ewa Partum and Lygia Clark.

Call, Response and Share

Participants will take it in turn to present actions, instructions, and performances to the group. The group and I will participate and respond to the calls.

Open sharing

There will be an opportunity for the group to present and share strategies, approaches and ideas from the weekend in an informal and supportive environment. Guest will be invited.

All participants must commit to the entire process in Manchester.

Dates, times and location(s):
hÅb and STUN, Manchester

Thursday 24th July 2014, 5pm to 8pm

Friday 25th July 2014, 10am to 6pm

Saturday 26th July 2014, 10am to 6pm

Participants will need to arrange and pay for their own travel and accommodation. Some food will be provided (please advise of any dietary needs ahead of time).

Deadline extended till noon, Friday July 4th.

Application procedure:
The workshop is open to those working with Performance and Live art and those perhaps looking to engage with performance strategies for the first time. An interest, desire and openness to examine historical works and develop performative responses will be key.

Artist should submit

1. CV/Biog, web links

2. Artists are asked to select 1 example of a contemporary or historical performance work they would like to respond to. Please write a brief description (300 words) about this choice. Identify why you have chosen the particular work and talk about its influence on your practice or thinking.

Artists selected will be asked to present (informally) their chosen work at the start of the workshop.

3. Up to 5 jpeg images of your work or links to material online

Artists based in the North and North West are encouraged to apply

Please email your application to Harold Offeh cc'ing Aaron Wright.
Applications should have the subject heading Call and Response DIY 11.

The artist:
Harold Offeh works in a range of media including performance, video, photography, interactive and digital media, employing humour as a means to confront the viewer with an assessment of contemporary popular culture. Recently, Offeh has approached the themes of futurism and hair through collective live engagements with other artists, performers and community participation. He has shown widely both in the UK and internationally. He lives in Cambridge and works in London and Leeds where he is a senior lecturer in Fine Art at Leeds Metropolitan University.

Contact information:
Harold Offeh

This project is part of DIY 11: 2014 and is supported by hÅb and STUN.

Part of DIY: 2014

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