A still from ‘scripted for a wayward narrator’ 2020 by Samra Mayanja. An image in soft focus. The back of someone's neck fills the foreground. In the background is a green gate, with a dark silhouette on the other side of the green gate's bars.
Talk & Performance
Somerset House Studios

Labour / Sweat / Criminality

Thu 30 Sep
18.45 - 20.30
Pay What You Can
Lancaster Rooms
New Wing

An evening of live readings and performance reflecting on carceral punishment. 

Thinking through the evolution of different forms of punishment and their intended purposes, this night of readings from Lola Olufemi, Samra Mayanja, and Ebun Sodipo and live performance by Imani Robinson will make connections between labour, sweat and criminality.  
Part of Abolition: In Defence of Translation, a series of presentations, organising workshops, conversations and performances reflecting on the many dimensions of abolition, curated and programmed by Lola Olufemi and Imani Robinson. 

Programme notes

Carceral geographies utilise punishment for the purposes of maintaining social order. Punishment is a vector for retribution; it is imagined as a corrective and yet only reaffirms the inherent criminality of the prisoner. 

About Lola Olufemi

Lola Olufemi is a black feminist writer and CREAM/Stuart Hall foundation researcher from London. Her work focuses on the uses of the feminist imagination and its relationship to cultural production, political demands and futurity. She is author of Feminism Interrupted: Disrupting Power (2020), Experiments in Imagining Otherwise, forthcoming from Hajar Press in 2021 and a member of 'bare minimum', an interdisciplinary anti-work arts collective.

About Imani Robinson

Imani Robinson is an artist and interdisciplinary writer who has presented work and facilitated projects internationally; their practice combines performance, oration, collaboration, poetry and critical theory, exploring themes of black geographies, the afterlives of transatlantic slavery, abolition, and radical resistance.

About Ebun Sodipo

Ebun Sodipo makes work for those who will come after: the black trans people of the future. Their sprawling practice, encompassing film, performance, installation, fiction, poetry, and sound, is focused on devising new language with which to imagine and speak about the body, creating new modes of thinking and feeling the past, and filling, in some way, the gaps and breaks of the archive(s) of modernity, all pertinent technologies for those with a subjugated history.

About Samra Mayanja

Samra Mayanja is an artist with poetics at the centre of her processes. Mayanja predominantly make performances and films as well as writing.She is an artist and writer, who has been temporarily based in Longformacus (Duns, Scotland) for an artist residency. Her work is concerned with what moves us and what it is to be moved. Spanning drawing+writing, performance and film, her work is an effort to commune disparate voices; to generate around and beyond what’s inconceivable, lost or arrives in tatters.