The Only Way Home Is Through the Show: Performance Work of Lois Weaver

Co-published by Live Art Development Agency and Intellect Books, 2015

21cm x 24cm, 320 pages, paperback with colour photographs throughout

Trade Orders: Intellect Books, see our Distribution page for more information

“A Spirited Guide Goddess for any art practice.” – Oreet Ashery, Artist

“It is only fitting that the book that chronicles the career of pioneering feminist, lesbian performance artist, Lois Weaver is exceptional in its own right.” – Morgan Gwenwald, GLBT Reviews

“The Only Way Home is definitively the richest representation of a feminist performance artist that I know of.” – Megan Shea, TDR: The Drama Review 62.1

… this volume helps to fill what has always been, and still is, a lamentable gap in terms of the documentation of feminist performance practices… [it] is a valuable means of communicating genealogies and legacies that are vital to sustaining and enhancing feminist performance cultures. In short, this is essential reading for all those makers, academics or theatre enthusiasts who share in Lois’s passionately held belief that ‘if you can imagine it you can make it. If you can make it then you can make it change’. Like the inspirational, consummate femme performer herself, this book is ‘hot’.” – Studies in Theatre and Performance (Routledge)

The personal accounts of (these) writers, better known for their more academic publications, alone make this book worth reading. But there is much more… – Jennie Klein, Theatre Research International 43:1 (2018): 113-14

Importantly – and fittingly, for Weaver – the book’s purview extends well beyond the singular artist and offers valuable insight into the scenes through which feminist theatre movements emerged in the late 1970s and 1980s, and beyond. The combination of numerous contributors reflects the reach of Weaver’s practice into a number of different artistic and political areas.” – Eleanor Robets, Contemporary Theatre Review: 28:3 (2018), pp. 421-422

Lois Weaver is one of the true pioneers in feminist and lesbian performance. The Only Way Home Is Through the Show explores her collaborative work with Split Britches and Spiderwoman as well as her solo projects, performance interventions, and work as a facilitator, teacher, and as Tammy WhyNot.

It tells her story through hundreds of professional and personal photos and an extraordinary range of texts, from performance writing to critical commentary – all embellished with performance ephemera, personal memoir, and hand-written notes on methodologies.

Featuring a wealth of material that has never previously been published, the book includes contributions from many of Weaver’s key collaborators, old and new, and many of the most important feminist writers, photographers, and performance makers of the last forty years.

The Only Way Home Is Through the Show is a guided tour of Lois Weaver’s aesthetics, principles, inspirations, innovations, and desires.

Live Art Development Agency and Intellect Books, 2015.

This publication is the third in the Intellect Live book series. Intellect Live is a collaboration between Intellect Books and the Live Art Development Agency. The series is characterized by lavishly illustrated and beautifully designed books that are created through close collaborations between artists and writers, and that are the first substantial publication dedicated to the artists’ work.


View other titles in the Intellect Live series.

Book Launches:

Abrons Arts Center, New York 
Friday 23 October 2015
6pm, Free to attend
Book launch and Cocktails with Lois Weaver and Jen Harvie. Part of Just Like A  Woman: New York Edition, a three-day programme of shows, installations, cabarets and discussions looking at the performance of identity.

Chelsea Theatre, London 
Friday 13 November 2015
6.30pm, Free to attend
Book launch and Cocktails with Lois Weaver and Jen Harvie. Part of Just Like A  Woman: London Edition, a programme of performances, screenings, installations cabarets and discussions looking at the performance of identity.

Queen Mary University of London Film and Drama Studio, ArtsTwo Building 
Monday 16 November 2015
6pm, Free, reservation essential
Cocktail Celebration with Lois Weaver and Jen Harvie. The event will include manifestos for ‘Making Feminist Performance’ from QMUL’s Dr Caoimhe McAvinchey, Sh!t Theatre’s Louise Mothersole and other makers and a Long Table open public discussion on ‘Making Feminist Performance’ (bring your own manifesto to share).