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Posted on April 2nd 2019
Sixth Formers Fill Horniman with 'Mile of String'
Sixth Form students recreated Marcel Duchamp’s famous ‘Sixteen Miles of String’ installation in the Horniman Museum in March. The performance took place in the Horniman’s conservatory, which students filled with black elastic, creating a tangled mess making it difficult for the audience to move in the space freely.
The ‘Mile of String’ performance piece, commissioned by the Horniman Museum and Goldsmiths University, was inspired by Duchamp's 1942 installation, which involved filling the ‘First Papers of Surrealism’ exhibition with string, making it difficult for anyone to access the work.
The recreation of Duchamp’s work was used as a tool to discuss issues around accessibility to culture and institutions like the Horniman for local young people. The performance was an opportunity for students to decolonise the space by making themselves highly visible and present through the installation.
This performance is an extension of the work we do in the art department. We are dedicated to providing students with real-world opportunities in the arts to connect them to what is happening in the art world now. Through this performance students were able to see how art can include performance but also be a form of activisim.
Mr.Campos said: "I like working with students through embodied practices because I see them come to life when they can use their bodies as a source for making art. They know their bodies best so they are fully empowered."
Folasade said: "Being involved in this performance showed me how an artwork can connect you to people and get them involved."
Duchamp's 'Sixteen Miles of String exhibition' from 1942.
The Horniman's Grade II listed cast iron Conservatory was built by the Horniman family in 1894.
Event photography by Fidel Garcia-Reichman.