as part of SPILL Festival of Performance in Ipswich
Ipswich Art School Gallery
1st – 3rd November 2012 11am - 6pm
Exhibited beyond a red rope barrier, a woman lies in her bed.
Bedding In emerges from the current welfare benefits overhaul, which threatens many with poverty and with a propagandist campaign that has seen disability hate crime leap by 50%.
Says artist-activist Liz Crow, “I wear a public self that is energetic, dynamic and happening. I am also ill and spend much of life in bed. The private self is neither beautiful nor grownup, it does not win friends or accolades, and I conceal it carefully. But the benefits system demands a reversal, my private self paraded to justify support.”
As she contends with the contradictions of the benefits system Liz explains “for some months, I have lain low for fear of being penalised, but the performer is beginning to re-emerge; instead of letting fear determine who I am, I’d rather stare it in the face.”
“Bedding In is a performance in which I take my private self and make it public, something I have not done in over 30 years. It feels dangerous exposed exciting.” In the gallery, over a period of three days, Liz will perform what she describes as the other side of her fractured self, her bed-life. “Since the public me is so carefully constructed, this will be a kind of un-performing of my self.”
“I want to make a twilight existence visible. But more, I want to show that what many people see as contradiction, what they call fraud, is only the complexity of real life. This is not a work of tragedy, but of in/visibility and complication; a chance to perform my self without façade.”
Each day, members of the public will be invited to Bedside Conversations, gathering round the bed or perching upon it to talk about the work, its backdrop, its politics.
Bedding In has been commissioned as part of Disability Arts Online’s Diverse Perspectives project (www.disabilityartsonline.org.uk) which, funded by Arts Council England, is commissioning eight disabled artists across the UK to make new artwork. Working closely with host organisations and festivals, artists will produce work that sparks conversations and debate about the Creative Case for Diversity.
More information is available at http://www.spillfestival.com/performance/bedding-in/
@RGPLizCrow / #BeddingIn
Bedside conversations will take place daily:
Thu 11.30pm, Fri 2pm, Sat 4pm (40 mins)
Limited capacity for Bedside Conversations - sign up on the day at SPILL Central.
BSL interpreter for Bedside Conversation on Saturday 3 November.
Wheelchair accessible venue.