A Spacex / Relational contemporary art project in everyday locations around Exeter city centre
17 April –
15 May 2004
Artists: Tariq Alvi, Oladélé Ajiboyé Bamgboyé, Caroline Bergvall, Ansuman Biswas, Jyll Bradley, Lisa Cheung, Michael Curran, Jem Finer, Guillermo Gómez-Peña, Jenny Mellings, Misha Myers, Rosalind Nashashibi, Grayson Perry, Quack-Project, Wrights & Sites + When In Rome II
Locations: Spacex, The Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Habitat, The Blue Boy Gift Shop, East to West, vacant shops in Paris Street, Exeter (numbers 12, 20 and 22)
Homeland is a major contemporary art project involving exhibitions, interventions, performances and events which essentially asks the question “What is Middle England?”
Homeland involves thirty four artists commissioned to either make new works or show existing pieces in everyday contexts for the first time including Turner Prize-winner Grayson Perry, celebrated Latino-American artist Guillermo Gómez-Peña and ICA Becks Futures-winner Rosalind Nashashibi. Homeland is presented, as part of the Middle England Series, in association with Arts Council England’s decibel initiative, “raising the voice of culturally diverse arts in Britain”.
Increasingly politicians, advertising and the media refer to ‘Middle England’ as if it were an accepted everyday definition, and yet its underlying criteria remain unclear. The question of who is able to consider themselves a part of Middle England, for example, is ambiguous. One aim of the project is to examine the construction of a cultural hegemony around this peculiarly English, class-bound model of community, with its strong sense of belonging and ownership, and thus its equivalent sense of exclusivity and resistance to change.
17 April 2004, High Noon to High Tea
Royal Albert Memorial Museum and city centre streets
Myers’ persona, Buffalo Sue, reframes the old Roman walls of Exeter into a rodeo corral, singing her Texas lullabies. Line dancing interludes performed by Exeter’s Montgomery Mavericks. You can follow along both remotely over a 3-D map of the old city at the Museum, or in the city centre streets.
Lonesome Long Gone
Saturday 15 May, High Noon to High Tea
Royal Albert Memorial Museum
Myers presents Buffalo Sue alongside the Museum’s exhibit of a North American Bison.
Blue Boy Walks: Wrights & Sights
Wrights & Sites are Stephen Hodge, Simon Persighetti, Phil Smith and Cathy Turner.
The displaced, shrapnel-scarred Blue Boy stands alone. To this orphan landmark for shoppers, we come bearing carrier bags of gifts, the colour of the sky.
In and Out of Middle England
30 April & 1 May 2004
A two-day symposium which aims to provide a critical platform for current ‘cultural diversity’ debates and to examine related socially-engaged concerns within contemporary visual arts. Presented by decibel, Arts Council England South West and organised in partnership with Spacex and Picture This.
What is Middle England? Sarat Maharaj, art historian/co-curator of Documenta XI; Kodwo Eshun, writer/researcher; Raimi Gbadamosi, artist/curator and Susan Pui San Lok, artist/writer.
Investigating Histories: Artists Oladélé Bamgboyé, Ansuman Biswas &Erika Tan present their current archive based projects.
Migrations: Artists film programme including work by Marine Hugonnier,Uyen Luu, Rosalind Nashashibi and Alia Syed, followed by a discussion with participating artists.
Paradise Omeros: the latest film by Isaac Julien.
Re-Bop Session: a live multi-media performance by Soul Jazz Sound System and Jonnie Williams