MAI (Montréal, arts interculturels) Presents: Taking Place, May 15–18

To engage in ongoing conversations dealing with identity and space, MAI (Montréal, arts interculturels) launched the Prendre Place / Taking Place series in 2016. Conceived to take up transdisciplinary considerations of space and its accompanying baggage, it is also a place for artists to take that place/their place, to claim it, to own it, to inhabit it. This, the 2nd edition, furthers those questions with 6 international artists driving the narrative through stop signs, and off the beaten track. 

Originally created to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Expo 67, Taking Place provides an exceptional space of visibility for performance artists: “We want to create a bridge between the visual arts and the performing arts in our two spaces. We encourage artists to come and take their place as performance artists,” stated Michael Toppings, Artistic Director of MAI.

We are very proud to dare with Taking Place. This is what makes us unique at MAI. We present artistic approaches that are often underrepresented,” said Michael Toppings.

The performance arts are characterized by the challenge of defining them. They are closely linked to the ‘happening’, as well as the Fluxus movement in the 1960s, whose aim was to remove all boundaries between art and life. Fluxus artists wanted to eliminate the idea of an art that is just to observe and rather put forward the idea of an art that is a lived experience. This is really what we want with this series: We invite you to live this unique experience, here.” explains Michael Toppings, programmer of the series.

Taking Place is also a body art showcase, which puts the body at the centre of attention.

EXILIUM: Wednesday, May 15 @ 8pm

Exilium by Montreal-based artist Santiago Tamayo Soler will explore the body in the context of exile: the physical, emotional, political, and cultural strains that this body must endure; the tension between the memory of a home and the new physical and political territory that is foreign to it; the state of this body that is torn between two spaces and its intrinsic need to heal, to forget, to be reborn, to learn again, and to let go.

NEUTER ALITY: Thursday, May 16 @ 8pm

A ritual performance dissecting the term “neutral” as it applies to historical national fascist and racist foundations in North America that to this day, incite the public to endorse the violence, eradication, and the collection of the “other.” Yunuen Rhi‘s Neuter Ality performance will consist in a neutralizing transformation of an original WWII Nazi-German victory trophy to transmute its meaning and open up a fourth space.
UNDRESS/RE-DRESS: Friday, May 17 & Saturday, May 18 @ 6pm

With Undress/Re-dress, Noëmi Lakmaier offers a “living installation” that combines object, performance, and actors. A woman in a virtually empty room is dressed, or perhaps undressed, by a male performer. Previously making waves with her Cherophobia project where she was lifted by 20,000 helium balloons in the Sydney Opera House, the Austrian born artist uses her own body to create endurance-based performances and living installations to explore boundaries between the physiological body we have and the phenomenological body we are.
MY LAST AMERICAN DOLLAR: Friday, May 17 @ 8pm

Keijaun Thomas asks about resistance in the framework of five spaces with My Last American Dollar: locker rooms, strip clubs, waiting rooms, church pews, and field days (military exercises/school athletics). Consisting of two rounds, the project investigates forms in which black and brown people hold space for each other. How do you carry the multiplicities of being young, gifted, and black?
MARVELOUS: Saturday, May 18 @ 8pm

Marvelous is a fashion and culture magazine created by a team of artists and published via performative readings by its editor-in-chief, Bryan Campbell. Born of a DIY process inspired by drag culture in which imitation, appropriation, and plagiarism recast the commercial languages of glossy mags, Marvelous deals in notions of expertise, economic access, and the psychology of persuasion and seduction.

MUY SERIO: Saturday, May 18 @ 9:30pm

With Muy Serio, the Colombian-born artist Carlos Maria Romero uses traditional pieces of masculine clothing as the sculpting material for a variety of queer performance gestures, extracting their symbolic power through staged rituals. Carlos Maria Romero called on 9 interested participants living in Montreal to do so. “Serio” is Colombian gay slang for “straight acting” and is used disdainfully as the opposite of effeminate, queer, faggot, or sissy. “Muy” is an intensifying adverb with strong “camp” potential.


Performance Art Series
Taking Place

May 15–18, 2019

Exilium by Santiago Tamayo Soler (Montreal) / May 15 @ 8pm
Neuter Ality by Yunuen Rhi (Los Angeles) / May 16 @ 8pm
Undress/Re-Dress by Noëmi Lakmaier (London) / May 17+18 @ 6pm
My Last American Dollar fby Keijaun Thomas (New York) / May 17 @ 8pm
Marvelous by Bryan Campbell (Paris) / May 18 @ 8pm  
Muy Serio by Carlos Maria Romero (Barranquilla) / May 18 @ 9:30pm

Did Somebody Say Party?
Taking Place Closing Party / May 18 @ 11pm
3 DJs // Elle Barbara, Honey Drip, Rhythm & Hues
3 Performances // Mich Cota, Be Heintzman Hope, Justin de Luna

Box Office?
$50: Taking Place Passport (access to all performances)
$15: One Performance Ticket (except Undress/Re-Dress, FREE)
$5: Party Ticket (or free with a Taking Place Ticket)
Montréal, arts interculturels // 3680 Jeanne-Mance, Montréal, QC, H2X 2K5

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