See Artist Clifford Owens Perform at the BMA
Join renowned artist Clifford Owens (b. 1971, Baltimore, MD) in an interpretation of scores written for him by Charles Gaines, Shinique Smith, Joyce J. Scott, and Senga Nengudi in an evening of performance at the BMA.
Owens selected the scores, or instructions for a performance, from his Anthology project expressly for his hometown of Baltimore. During the performances, the artist will engage the audience on a procession through the museum. He will be joined by Baltimore-based artists including musician Wendel Patrick.
Thursday, December 12, 6:00−8:00 pm
Museum visitors can perform a fifth score, by Derrick Adams, during regular museum hours Wednesday, December 11−Sunday, December 15; it will not be open during Owens’ December 12 evening event.
The event is free, but registration required as space is limited.
All available spaces for this performance have been reserved. We will reactivate the sign-up form in the event that spaces become available.
Owens recognized that generations of black artists working in contemporary performance art have been excluded from the art historical canon. His Anthology project redresses this history. In Anthology, Owens invited dozens of African American artists—some his elders, others his peers and younger—to write him a score.
Anthology is reinforcing a history that has been out there for decades,” Owens explained. “In the canon of performance-art history, we just don’t exist. We’re invisible. . . . But it’s been happening since the ’50s, starting with Benjamin Patterson, and through the ’70s, especially on the West Coast with Senga Nengudi, Maren Hassinger, and other artists.”
Owens first presented Anthology in his 2011 solo exhibition at New York’s MoMA PS1. Twenty-six major artists contributed to that initial call and theirs scores were published in Owens’ book Anthology the following year. Since then, he has continued to invite new scores and reinterpret existing ones in performance. Owens considers Anthology to be a living and breathing archive, a compendium that expands and evolves: “Anthology was never meant to be a one-off. I always imagined myself doing these performances numerous times, in different iterations, different contexts.”
Clifford Owens: Five Anthology Scores is generously sponsored by Pamela J. Joyner and Alfred J. Giuffrida.
Fall programming at The Baltimore Museum of Art is generously sponsored by Camden Partners.