“Girls will be boys and boys will be girls It’s a mixed up muddled up shook up world.” Lola, The Kinks
Just Like a Woman is a two-day programme of shows, debates, installations and screenings looking at the performance of identity – the ways femininity can be ‘performed’ and representations of gender can be queered through performance.
With women performing women, women performing men, men performing women, and artists who go beyond the limits of gender altogether, Just Like A Woman features a dazzling array of US and UK artists including Lois Weaver, Narcissister, Dickie Beau, Lucy Hutson, George Chakravarthi, Lucille Power, Harold Offeh, Laura Bridgeman and The Drakes, The Girls, and The Famous Lauren Barri Holstein.
LADA’s programmes Just Like A Woman and Old Dears are part of the 2015 Sacred season at Chelsea Theatre, London, in November 2015, and the culminating events in LADA’s Restock Reflect Rethink Three project (2013-15) on Live Art and Feminism.
A New York version of Just Like A Woman will be presented at Abrons Arts Centre from 23 to 25 October 2015, in collaboration with Chelsea Theatre and with the support of British Council.
The first version of Just Like a Woman was presented at City Of Women Festival, Slovenia, in 2013.
Friday 13 November
The Only Way Home Is Through the Show: Performance Work of Lois Weaver
Book launch and Cocktails with Lois Weaver and Jen Harvie
Lois Weaver is one of the true pioneers in feminist and lesbian performance. Edited by Jen Harvie, The Only Way Home Is Through the Show is a guided tour of Lois Weaver’s aesthetics, principles, inspirations, innovations, and desires, featuring a wealth of material that has never previously been published. The book 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. Published by LADA and Intellect Books in the Intellect Live series.
Signed copies will be available to purchase on the night.
Dickie Beau, Blackouts
The drag fabulist shapeshifts through a shadowy soundscape of lost souls in a theatrical trip to the subconscious underworld of his future self. Bringing to life extraordinary audio artefacts Dickie leads us on a bewitching adventure in found sound as he channels the ghosts of his childhood idols. Blackouts includes audio that has never before been heard in the public domain from Marilyn Monroe’s final interview, as well as material appropriated from Dickie’s own recordings with Richard Meryman, the man who conducted Marilyn’s last interview. Other original source material includes the spellbinding “Judy Speaks” tapes, of Judy Garland alone in a room with a dictaphone, ostensibly making notes for a memoir that was never written.
“Touching, bizarre and visually gorgeous . . . a thing unlike any other . . . it is the drag show at the end of the world.” Time Out
The Famous Lauren Barri Holstein, Live At The World’s End
She’s back. Expect the worst.
The Famous Lauren Barri Holstein, also known as ‘The Famous,’ is a performance maker of large-scale, stage-based, disastrous feminist spectacles. Her work interrogates the agency of the displayed female body in contemporary feminism and performance, with a particular interest in the politicizing potential of ‘ugly’ affects, such as humiliation, boredom, and disgust.
Laura Bridgeman and The Drakes, The Butch Monologues
Secret stories exploring sexuality, vulnerability and desire taken from interviews with butches, masculine women and transmen, living world-wide.
The Drakes are a London-based members group of butches, transmen and gender rebels brought together in friendship and solidarity. Laura Bridgeman runs Hotpencil Press with Serge Nicholson, an independent press dealing in high-quality, unique and contemporary works that have been ignored by the mainstream. Directed by Julie McNamara from Vital Xposure Theatre Company
Saturday 14 November
A discussion with some of the most radical US and UK artists who are queering the performance and representations of gender. With Narcissister, Dickie Beau, The Famous Lauren Barri Holstein and Lois Weaver/Tammy WhyNot.
Lucille Power, The Butch/Femme Touch Up Service
An irreverent interactive performance, mixing glamour with grunge, and a healthy dose of sexual anarchy. Everyone is offered a bespoke experience, in which you’re invited to choose a ‘service’ from a lucky dip bran tub, take a seat in a barber’s chair, and sit back and enjoy!
Butch/Femme Touch-up Service asks how much any of us are intrinsically ‘feminine’ or ‘masculine’, and pokes fun at the idea that there are gender norms.
Originally commissioned for Duckie Goes To Gateways, the piece is a celebration of lesbians who lived their lives underground and unnoticed from the 1950s to 70s, and a reimagining of the binaries of butch and femme identities for a queer age.
Girls on Film
A screening of performance documentation, performances to camera and other films introduced by LADA’s Aaron Wright featuring Oreet Ashery, Cassils, Qasim Riza Shaheen, David Hoyle, Ursula Martinez and many more.
The Girls, Diamonds & Toads
From 6pm (come and go as often as you like)
A tableau vivant that sits somewhere between self-portraiture and performance and invokes the ill-fated heroines of the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen whilst alluding to contemporary concerns of voyeurism and female objectification.
“The Girls do not speak or move. It is as though they have been trapped here for decades in these bodies, Havisham-esque, bed ridden and beginning slightly to smell… It’s a parody of feminine beauty and a metaphor for the dangers of the double edged sword of passive objectification.” Beverley Knowles, FAD, 2013
Narcissister, Conditions of the White Mask
A rare London performance by the legendary New York based Narcissister. Wearing mask and merkin, she works at the intersection of performance, dance, visual art and activism. She actively integrates her prior experience as a professional dancer and commercial artist with her current art practice in a range of media which also includes photography, video art, and experimental music.
She has presented work in New York at The New Museum, Moma PS1, the Kitchen, Abrons Art Center as well as many nightclubs, galleries, and alternative art spaces. Narcissister has also presented her work internationally at the Music Biennale in Zagreb, Croatia, at Chicks on Speed’s Girl Monster Festival, at City of Women in Ljubljana, Slovenia, at Copenhagen’s first live art festival, at the Camp/Anti-Camp Aestival at Hebbel Am Ufer, Berlin and at Fierce Festival, Birmingham, UK among many others. Narcissister was nominated for a 2013 Bessie Award for her evening-length piece “Organ Player” which debuted at Abrons Art Center 2013. Narcissister is a recipient of a 2015 Creative Capital Award and is a 2015 Theo Westenberger Grantee.
Harold Offeh, Covers
The artist embodies images from popular culture and attempts to transform a series of classic music album covers from the 1970s and 80s by black divas.
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. He lives in Cambridge and works in London and Leeds, where he is a senior lecturer in Fine Art at Leeds Metropolitan University.
A dazzling line up of artists of all ages present short turns on the performance of gender, MC’d by Lois Weaver aka Tammy WhyNot. George Chakravarthi performs Negrophilia!described by writer Mary Paterson as “a dance performance in which he transforms from an ape to a chorus girl, skewering the histories of racism, evolution and exhibitionism in one long, seductive move.” johnsmith (aka Eleanor Fogg) performs the stunning what it feels like for a girl, Krishna Istha gives us Bambi Sexsmith, an award-winning kinky queer conversion therapist, Lucy Hutson revisits her infamous Grindr vs. The Womens’ Institute, with a special guest appearance from Rosana Cade and Eilidh MacAskill’s male alter egos.
A New York edition of Just Like A Woman will be presented at Abrons Arts Centre in October 2015 in collaboration with Chelsea Theatre and with the support of British Council
Just Like A Woman was first presented at City of Women Festival, Slovenia in 2013 and is part of LADA’s Restock, Rethink, Reflect initiative on Live Art and Feminism.
13-14 November 2015
Day Pass: £15|12
Two Day Pass: £25|22