Credit:Presented by the Contemporary Art Society, 2017/18
Ownership history:Purchased from Galerie Sultana, Paris by the Contemporary Art Society, 3 March 2018; presented to Walker Art Gallery, National Museums Liverpool, 2018
I Lost Track of the Swarm was made by Maheke during a six-month graduate residency at South London Gallery in 2016. The three-channel work features three unique videos of the artist dancing alone in a dark space, lit by a single light. In one video the light is held in his hands, in another it is attached to his waist. In the third it appears behind him like a spotlight. I Lost Track of the Swarm expands on concepts central to the artist’s practice, including his understanding of the body as an archive, in which history, memory and identity are fused. For the artist, movement and dance can be a way to process history and experience, both lived and inherited, while simultaneously asserting the performer’s own presence and agency.
Seeking After the Fully Grown Dancer *deep within*, first performed in Toronto in 2016, is inspired by the principles of ‘authentic movement’, an expressive and improvised dance practice in which a performer’s movement emerges through their subconscious, free from direction or expectation. The original performance has been acquired for the Walker Art Gallery’s collection along with a film of the same title, based on the live performance, with subtitled narration. Both the performance and film explore the power relationship between performer and audience.
The acquisition of these works for the Walker Art Gallery strengthens their existing holdings of contemporary art, particularly in new media and performance, while supporting their aim to embed and foreground queer and LGBT+ histories and narratives in the collection.
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