Artist

The Merry Wagtail Jades, The Breeches They Do Carry

Pankhurst in the Park 2018 artist Anna FC Smith has done a write up about the work she created for our NYC adventure EMINENT DOMAIN, read about it here

The Merry Wagtail Jades, The Breeches They Do Carry: Impudent women and cuckold’s horns.

BY ANNA FC SMITH

The title of the work I exhibited at Eminent Domain derives from the broadside ballad ‘A new summons to all the merry wagtail jades that attend at horn fair.’ Printed and sold by J. Pitts in England in 1802 and 1819, it reads: “Come all you wagtail jades, Who love to play the game: And whilst your husbands are abroad, To have some of the same”… “The breeches they do carry, And swear they will them wear, And have their sparks when they please, Though husbands jealous are.”

I exhibited three sculptural banners capped with cuckold’s horns “tipt (sic) with silver” as the broadside ballad describes. The banners themselves were Edwardian bloomers made from a fabric printed with colourful splattered eggs. Their accompanying film echoes with the dissonant sound of crashing and banging pans as the spirit of the impudent women of the past blows through the bloomers.

I was commissioned by Alexandra Arts as part of their Pankhurst In The Park centenary celebrations to explore the history of the Suffragettes and their relevance to contemporary radical feminism. I decided to explore older forms of female carnivalesque, unruly behaviour to draw comparisons with the actions of the Suffragettes and how they were perceived. My work aims to highlight a chain of symbolism in the raucous practices of dissent. My research began with the actions of spitting, pelting and egg throwing undertaken by and against the Suffragettes and led me to rough music and the phenomenon of the Horn Fair.
— Anna FC Smith @ art511mag.com

Below is the video artist portrait that we commissioned of Anna FC Smith for the Pankhurst in the Park 2018 season

Alien Armageddon, Empathy & The Vine of the Soul

A conversation with Melanie Bonajo

BY KATIE CERCONE

In terms of plant meditation, I allow plants to be my teachers, they take me to a place of silence and I access portals that are usually only opening with an intensely deep, probably monastery meditation practice
— Melanie Bonajo
Melanie Bonajo, Night Soil - Economy of Love, 2015, film still courtesy AKINCI

Melanie Bonajo, Night Soil - Economy of Love, 2015, film still courtesy AKINCI

This article is now live over at Art 511 Magazine! This piece was commissioned by Alexandra Arts and first published in the special print edition of Art 511 Mag celebrating International Women’s Day and the centenary for UK women’s suffrage [funded by ARTS COUNCIL ENGLAND] during the Pankhurst in the Park 2018 season. You can download the digital version of the full mag here

Spiraling Smoke

BY CLAIRE ZAKIEWICZ

Is now live over at Art 511 Magazine! This article was commissioned by Alexandra Arts  and first published in the special print edition of Art 511 Mag celebrating International Women’s Day and the centenary for UK women’s suffrage [funded by ARTS COUNCIL ENGLAND] during the Pankhurst in the Park 2018 season. Plus, you can download the digital version of the full mag here

I met SOL KJØK in May 2017 at her loft in Brooklyn when I became one of her artists in residence. Her studio is the size of two tennis courts, and you can see both the Empire State and Chrysler buildings through a pair of factory windows. Acrobatic swings, harnesses and platforms dangle from 20ft ceilings. A full-sized tipi sits off-centre in the space where a Shaman performs drum journeys. World-class physicists, artists, academics and eccentrics regularly pass through. Her world is an inspiring, cross-pollinating place of collaboration and interaction. From the roof you overlook one of the most polluted pockets of America’s post-industrial wasteland – a mad dystopian scene set against one of the most inspiring skylines in the world.
— Claire Zakiewicz

Anna FC Smith in the news

Pankhurst in the Park 2018 commissioned artist Anna FC Smith has made it into the news today, read the full article in Wigan Today here,  about her NYC debut at EMINENT DOMAIN in West Chelsea. This exhibition featured over 90 feminist artist from around the world and was a collaboration between Alexandra Arts and NYC based Art 511 Magazine

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Turning Around and Speaking Back by Lauren Velvick

For the Pankhurst in the Park centenary edition of Art511 Magazine we commissioned an article by artist and writer Lauren about Hannah Leighton-Boyce and Ruth Barker residency at Castlefield Gallery. Titled 'Turning around and speaking back' this have now been published on the Art511 Magazine site.

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"The overarching theme of this year’s Wonder Women radical feminist festival in Manchester has to do with women’s representation and influence in our political and cultural institutions, responding to the centenary of the Representation of the People Act. 1918 was the first time that any women were able to vote in Britain, but as we must be careful to acknowledge, it was only property-owning women over thirty who were granted this basic right with the act. As such, it is important to commemorate and respond with nuance, something that the research-lead art practices of Hannah Leighton-Boyce and Ruth Barker are able to do by virtue of their methods and structure. As part of the festival, Leighton-Boyce and Barker have been commissioned to produce new bodies of work to be presented in a two-person exhibition at Castlefield Gallery, part of the gallery’s long-running ‘head to head’ series, whereby two artists whose work corresponds are placed in juxtaposition. Over the past year, both artists have been supported in conducting research residencies, allowing for the time and space to become embedded within their respective institutions and communities, and to explore unanticipated avenues". - Lauren Velvick

Read the full article here.

Download the full magazine here

Congratulations to Moss Side artist Ekua Bayunu

2018 marks the centenary of women’s right to the vote. Today, Alexandra Arts’ Pankhurst in the Park, is proud to honour this historically significant moment by announcing that the position of Artist in Residence for Pankhurst in the Park, 2018, has been awarded to local artist Ekua Bayunu, who will be taking up residence at Alexandra Park between the 14th April and the 9th June.

April 14th, 2018, will mark the launch of the 8-week interdisciplinary, community-oriented project “Women Hold up Half the Sky”, led by Ekua Bayunu, this year’s Artist in Residence (AIR) for Alexandra Arts’ “Pankhurst in the Park”. An introductory artist-led talk will be held with Bayuna, who will be speaking at the Alexandra Park Pavilion at 2pm. Followed by a women's artists space session, organised in association with the Global Arts Manchester, a group co-founded by Bayunu to ‘encourage people to participate in the visual arts and learn more about diversity.’

The 8-week project will incorporate elements of sculpture and film, and will include the participation of a diverse range of members of the local community; who can get involved with workshops held at Alexandra Park’s Chorlton Lodge and Depot. Dates will be listed shortly.

On June 9th, 2018, to celebrate the close of Ekua Bayunu’s 8-week AIR project, “Women Hold up Half the Sky”, you are invited to participate in a day of events presenting and reflecting on the work. The celebration will host happenings all around the park, all culminating in a closing party at the Pavilion café.

The project draws from a central theme of the Pankhurst in the Park project, the legacy of the suffrage movement and the special significance of Alexandra Park in this history. Emmeline Pankhurst lived just on the borders of the park and 2018 marks not only the centenary of the right of women (over 30) to vote. It will also be a hundred and ten years since thousands of suffragettes marched in Alexandra Park.

Bayuna’s work will expand beyond local concerns to build on the themes of global women’s leadership and consider culture, the arts and creativity as tools for active citizenship of central significance.

Already with significant experience as an artist, Bayunu moved to Manchester in 1993 and has since then produced several high-profile works around the city (“Sensory Garden” in Hulme Park, “Anansi Mosaics” at Royce Primary School), worked in outreach support at Manchester’s Contact Theatre between 2001 and 2006, worked from her studio at Artwork Atelier in Salford, and organised exhibitions celebrating Black History Month in collaboration with Global Arts Manchester in 2017. Ekua started 2018 with her solo exhibition titled “Re:Birth” at Manchester’s Chuck Gallery. She has lived and worked as an artist and tutor with a keen sense of community participation for several decades.

 Follow Ekua @ekuabay & @globalartsmcr #WomenHoldUpHalfTheSky

Image credit - Rod Leon

Art 511 Mag

10 Organisations Helping Artists build Community

Alexandra Arts is named by Art 511 Mag as one of '10 Organisations helping Artists build community' with Ultracultural Others, Minnesota street projects, Beat Global, Culture Push + others. We are truly humbled, to be connected to so many forward thinking creatives who are smashing up the conventional mould of 'community arts'. We are also the only organisation outside the US on the list! Read the full article here

In addition to their dynamic offerings in the park, Alexandra Arts is perhaps best know for its (international) artist residency program Pankhurst in the Park. Inspired largely by the legacy of the suffragette activism that took place in Alexandra Park and named for iconic movement leader Emmeline Pankhurst.
— Art 511 Mag

'Sound of Silence' exhibition review 

Radical artist and feminist writer Katie Cercone did a shimmering review of Alexandra Arts lead Artist Lotte Karlsen's solo exhibition 'Sound of Silence' in New York, last September. It's now available to view at Art 511 Mag

In a highly competitive and commercialized industry like art, where working together or calling yourself “feminist” isn’t always a safe or lucrative career move, Karlsen’s insistence on following through with her total vision for integration of self and community feels all encompassing in her radically interdisciplinary work. Her dexterity with the medium of glass and subtle meditation on the nature of life and death promises to shine through in this kinetic, effervescent installation for many moons
— Katie Cercone, Art 511 Mag

Arts Award

Pankhurst in the Park Arts Award 2016-17

It took us a whole year to complete our Pankhurst in the Park Arts Award pilot, with students from year 4-6 at St Mary’s Primary school in Moss Side. Although It took much longer then anticipated, It’s been so worth it tho, because of our young student artist. Who designed and made some really funny, cool and poignant t-shirts. We also found time to laugh, dance and write poetry. 

If the mind is a key,
to all of creation.
It can destroy or heat,
by input of information.
What control do we have?
Plotting our life’s direction...
It is a simple changing,
Our belief and intention.
— Poem by Manal, year 6

On the day, they left school for summer holidays, we had the Arts Award certificate ceremony. We are so proud of their creative achievements and wish them all the best. 

Essay: What we are doing by Kathryn O’ Regan

‘Startling unexpectedness is inherent in all beginnings’:

On Bunny Collective’s What we are doing       

In the prologue of The Human Condition, Hannah Arendt boldly states:

What I propose in the following is a reconsideration of the human condition from the vantage point of our newest experiences and our most recent fears…What I propose, therefore, is very simple: it is nothing more than to think what we are doing.[1]

From this statement, Bunny Collective borrowed the title for their most recent exhibition held in the woodland of Alexandra Park on Saturday May 7 2016. What we are doing was the culmination of the collective’s two month residency as part of Alexandra Art’s Pankhurst in the Park programme and it took the form of a site-specific temporary exhibition held in collaboration with students from the Manchester School of Architecture. From the very outset, What we are doing was based on ideas of combined action and ephemerality, both of which are central to Arendt’s claims.

 Where Bunny Collective’s previous exhibitions, most notably The Young-Girl’s Gaze at SOMA Contemporary, Waterford and SUGAR at TACTIC, Cork, primarily dealt with notions of technology, identity, feminine experience and the digital sphere, What we are doing sought to grapple with broader concerns anchored on Arendt’s distinction between labour and work. Due to the rich industrial history of the city, Bunny Collective wished to tap into ideas related to work, but with an aim to consider what constitutes ‘work’ in the first place: how work can be something other than waged exertion to produce profits or the manufacturing of commodities.

 In The Human Condition, Arendt proposes that there are three forms of activity fundamental to the ‘human condition’: labour, work, and action. For Arendt, labour corresponds to the biological life of man as an animal, work corresponds to the artificial world of objects made by human beings, and lastly action relates to the human condition of plurality. Central to these claims is the labour-work divide whereby labour involves the necessary tasks undertaken by human beings in every aspect of their existence. Where the acts of labour do not leave behind a physical trace and are characterised by their momentary nature, work involves ‘making’ and pivots on the production of tangible objects, which are defined by their permanence and durability.

 Hidden just off the cherry-blossom lined pathway, What we are doing unfolded in a shady woodland clearing. Set-up and displayed over the duration of one day, in its very essence the exhibition corresponded with Arendt’s theory as it was an act of labour in itself: almost as soon as the exhibition was set up, it was dismantled again, leaving behind no physical evidence that an exhibition had taken place here. In this regard, What we are doing felt like a brief but powerful intervention into the daily life of the park. On a regular summer Saturday, while families picnicked, friends lazed on the lawn and teams played cricket in their dazzling whites, What we are doing took over a little patch of the park but with an equally thoughtful and playful sense of purpose.

 This sense of mischievous subversion was pervasive in both the architecture students’ designs and the artwork on display. For example, Hannah Le Feuvre’s and Carmen Hubbard’s piece is part of a larger project titled Secret Branch, which involves designing and creating  wearable art objects during their lunch breaks whilst at work at a large London art gallery. The motive of the project is to challenge the daily routine and boredom of paid employment and particularly, to persist in making art when your waged role is to silently invigilate it. The piece itself consisted of a white-painted branch with a length of a thin white cloth attached. From here, cryptic symbols were appliquéd onto the cloth and multicoloured strands of braided material were tied to the branch and left to fall freely. Within the exhibition, La Feurve’s and Hubbard’s piece operated as a type of makeshift banner -   a triumphant flag promoting a flight of transgressive fancy in the face of gruelling monotony and commerce.

 Sasha Cresdee’s work ‘Potential Completion, Temporal Fulfilment’ performed a similar function in that her knotty webs of rainbow yarn transformed the surrounding woodland into a spectacular otherworld. Previously, Cresdee has spoken about how these woollen nets resemble skin in that they are simultaneously porous and protective. This reading of the work adds another dimension to their effectiveness as art objects as it compels the viewer to be more sensitive to the fragility and tactility of their making. Despite their dreamy purple-pink ombre, these knitted structures are strangely bodily in the way that they twist and turn around branches and snake onto the grass in a tangled cascade. Furthermore, in presenting knitted chains in a collaborative exhibition, Cresdee’s work becomes the physical manifestation of connection and togetherness. Of course, not only do her knitted structures present a permanent object in terms of Arendt’s ‘work’ - although it could be said that they are unravelling with time - the use of textiles in both this work and in La Feuvre’s and Hubbard’s is significant also considering Manchester’s remarkable history as a manufacturer of textiles (particularly cotton) from the time of the Industrial Revolution up until the 1950s.

If Cresdee’s work is precariously situated between permanence and slow disintegration, Riikke Enne’s text sculpture ‘Devouring Tools’ presented an equally curious dichotomy. Planted in the hard soil, the words ‘USE THIS’ were just about visible in the afternoon sun. Enne’s sculpture was made of metal rods continuously welded, melted down and twisted together - a process that is exceptionally hard on the required equipment. In its solid, metal physicality the sculpture was simultaneously present as an object of ‘making’ in the Arendtian sense, and oddly invisible - merely a thin metallic structure only seen on catching the light. Indeed, it could be said that ‘Devouring Tools’ is a work of playful juxtaposition, not least in how the phrase itself implores you to use what should be a fairly useless art object, particularly one that is made of such spiky and uninviting materials. However, in a peculiar turn of events, the work instigated unexpected involvement from the audience: letters were rearranged and shuffled, accidentally stood and stamped on, and by the close of day, one of the letters had even been pocketed.  

Where Enne’s work engaged with concepts of materiality, production and utility respectively, meanwhile, Saffa Khan’s installation, ‘Tumhari Dua/She prays' quietly explored one’s personal relationship with ritual and devotion. In a concealed corner, decorated with glowing blue lanterns strung from the trees by the MSA students, the work consisted of a pale pink canvas repeatedly printed with the artist’s silhouette, propped upon an embroidered, bright blue Muslim prayer mat. The installation included a number of objects associated with the Muslim prayer ritual of Nimaaz, including a tasbi (prayer beads), a type of alarm clock that summons a call to prayer, and a Namaz topi ( an Islamic skull cap). Nimaaz is a demanding process that requires the devoted to pray five times a day if possible, despite time or location restrictions. In using her own photographic image, Khan appears to be working through her relationship with these arduous requirements and what she herself terms the ‘spiritual labour’ of Nimaaz. Strikingly, the photographs printed on the canvas were taken unbeknownst to the artist - whilst she was praying she had her camera switched on.  This personal fact adds another level to the work: by sheer accident this private and humble act was captured and solidified into a photographic image.

Arguably, Camilla Frankl-Slater’s work ‘100 knives’ is in dialogue with Khan’s work as her piece explores notions of religion and the everyday too. Rather than Muslim ritual, Frankl-Slater’s work is a reflection on the Judaic tradition of Neitzah, which is an ancient ritual involving thrusting a knife into the earth ten times over in order to purify it. Nowadays, the ritual is enacted less frequently due to the widespread availability of chemical cleaning products, yet Neitzah is still carried out during the festival of Pesach (Passover) when Jews temporarily follow stricter dietary laws and are especially attentive to the sanitary conditions of their cutlery. ‘100 knives’ is less a commentary on religious ritual as it as it is about ‘women’s work’ so to speak. In many faiths, much of the preparation prior to a religious celebration is carried out by women, predominantly in the kitchen. According to the artist, the title is also a play on her mother saying that she has a ‘one hundred things to do’. In this sense, ‘100 knives’ is a clever and subtle reminder of the labour-intensive, yet often thankless and easily forgotten work undertaken by women in their homes. Furthermore, there is a certain violence, or rather aggression in sticking 100 knives into the earth and in this regard, Frankl-Slater’s piece is visually arresting, serving to preserve what should be a fleeting act. As the knives shimmer in the sunlight, reflecting the green of the woodland foliage, they become literal ‘blades of grass’.

In continuing this theme of overlooked aspects of domestic labour, Samantha Conlon presented a number of photographs of her young nieces in a series titled Copper Beech - the title of which is borrowed from a local housing estate. The photographs were blown-up and printed on PVC banners, hung from the trees and held taut by bungee cords pegged into the ground.  One of these photographs depicted two blonde-haired girls of about seven or eight, dressed in casual sportswear with one girl standing over a pink Little Mermaid-emblazoned bicycle. The girls look boldly out at the camera; their stern facial expressions in sharp contrast to their angelic features. Another image portrayed a little blonde girl sitting cross-legged on a footpath with an empty McDonald’s cup beside her. Against a redbrick building, she looks away from the camera, poised in deep thought. In general, Conlon’s work focuses on the modest and minor details of growing-up. For example, her previous series Daughters took a close look at the intimate and tender moments between mother and daughter. Similarly, Copper Beech concerns observation, recording the little moments of growing up within a typical Irish working-class family. Yet, in capturing her subjects on grey pavement or particularly against red brick, which features heavily in Manchester’s architectural make-up, Conlon’s photographs could just as easily be of typical youngsters in Manchester or elsewhere. At their core, Conlon’s images are about ‘the everyday’: what it means to grow up within uniform estates and the ways in which residents try to work through that sameness. Her work succeeds as she unexpectedly presents her nieces, as young as they may be, as powerful individuals in their own right, bestowed with rich interior lives beyond their years. Arguably, Conlon’s photographs tie in with Arendt’s belief in the significance of the individual within the collective: how each individual has the capacity to exercise their own agency and the possibility to disrupt the status quo.

 In an astonishing coincidence, the Little Mermaid as featured in Conlon’s photograph was the subject of Charlotte Cullen’s and Eleanor Cully’s performance piece entitled ‘Siren’s Song’. At 4pm, a group gathered in the woodland glade to hear Cullen read excerpts from their texts interspersed with quotations from texts by Sylvia Plath, Sara Ahmed and most notably, from Hans Christian Andersen's The Little Mermaid. Cullen’s spoken performance was accompanied at regular intervals by Cully’s haunting flute song and was a perfect example of the type of transient collaboration that defined this exhibition. In choosing to use extracts from Andersen’s The Little Mermaid, ‘Siren’s Song’ became a vulnerable exploration of pain, fantasy, risk and the suffering of the human body.  For example, to take one excerpt from The Little Mermaid as read by Cullen:

Your tail will then disappear, and you will feel great pain, as if a sword were passing through you. But all who see you will say that you are the prettiest little human being they ever saw. You will still have the same floating gracefulness of movement, and no dancer will ever tread so lightly; but at every step you take it will feel as if you were treading upon sharp knives, and that the blood must flow.

 Of course, the mention of knives in this quote ties in with Frankl-Slater’s ‘100 knives’ and we are reminded once again of a sort of covert violence. In this work, violence translates into a meditation on the pressure and stress that we put our frail and imperfect bodies under in order to achieve states of unattainable perfection, and ultimately, how we are united by the fragility and limitations of our bodies: ‘Bleeding feet will bond us’.

 In essence, The Human Condition champions new ways of looking at the world. It is about the human capacity to begin, change and start over again. Aoife O’ Dwyer’s twirling reflective mobile titled ‘125%’ invited viewers to take a closer look at their surroundings by presenting photographs of their immediate environment in a 360 degree panoramic layout. The opposite side of the photographs were covered in mirrored paper to give a distorted impression of the same space but from the opposite side. Resourcefully supported by a bright pink hoola-hoop, the work, much like Enne’s, triggered extraordinary levels of interaction from the audience, quite unlike what would have occurred should the piece had been installed in a typical gallery setting. Without a moment’s pause, onlookers - adults and children alike - brazenly stuck their head under the mobile to get a closer look at the wood in which they stood in. The images themselves were grainy and magnified, speckled with whimsical pink dots like flyaway balloons or a punkish paint splatter here and there. Once again, ‘125%’ was a bid for careful and attentive viewing, encouraging viewers to observe and experience their world from multiple sides and perspectives. In this capacity, ‘125%’ was a work of great wonder, instigating both collaborative interaction and individual engagement – with every gentle swivel of the mobile, the viewer was permitted to see the space afresh. As Margaret Canovan writes in her introduction to The Human Condition:

Only the experience of sharing a common human world with others who look at it from different perspectives can enable us to see reality in the round and to develop a shared common sense.[2]

In the end, this is how we can think of What we are doing also: as a vehicle to bring people together; to unite different perspectives and ways of living; to look closer and better at this crazy, troubling and changing world; and lastly to think to oneself that new ways of being and experiencing are infinitely and always possible.

-       Kathryn O’ Regan is a writer and curator based in Cork, Ireland. She has assisted Bunny Collective in the curation of their exhibitions, The Young-Girl’s Gaze, SUGAR and What we are doing and has written accompanying essays for each of these shows.  Her work can be found on kathrynoregan.wordpress.com

[1] Hannah Arendt, ‘Prologue’, The Human Condition, The University of Chicago Press, 1958, 5.

[2] Margaret Canovan, ‘Introduction’, in Arendt, The Human Condition, University of Chicago Press, 1998, xni.

Bunny Collective artist portraits

The Bunny Collective was Alexandra Arts' International Artist in Residence, during the 'Pankhurst in the Park' 2016 Spring programme.

In connection with their residency we have made a video artist portrait of the collective. In fact we did two, because we did not want you to miss out on getting to know the bunnies better, hearing about their artist in residency experience and their time in Manchester. Enjoy!

Pankhurst in the Park Returns with Warriors and Wonder Women

Pankhurst in the Park 2016 Presents Legacy Fatale
Pop up performances: 8-11 March, 2016; Manchester City Centre locations.
Free, all ages.
Launch event: Saturday 12 March; 'Tea Hive' Pavilion, Alexandra Park, M16 8PJ. 6pm - midnight. Free, 18+.

Alexandra Arts has announced the return of Pankhurst in the Park, a public programme of free, age-friendly events, artist commissions, an international curator in residency and educational programme, taking place in Manchester from March to May, 2016, and in New York between June and July, 2016.

 Curator of Pankhurst in the Park, Lotte Karlsen said:

“Pankhurst in the Park aims to empower the local communities around Alexandra Park through engagement with their local environment and social history, and to promote the wealth of talented female artists in Manchester and beyond by providing a platform for their work. We are thrilled that Arts Council England and Manchester City Council have recognised the value of the work we are doing, and have granted funding for the Spring programme." 

Kicking off the programme with an ‘animal print extravaganza’, performance art collective, Legacy Fatale, will travel from New York to channel the ancient, nomadic, warrior women of the Amazon on the streets of Manchester from 8 to 11 March, during Wonder Women 2016. This will lead up to an interactive 'Wonder Warrior' performance and artist presentation as part of Pankhurst in the Park's official launch party with DJ Andrea Trout, at ‘Tea Hive’ Pavilion in Alexandra Park on 12 March, 2016.

Curated by the Manchester-based, artist-led collective, Alexandra Arts, Pankhurst in the Park is inspired by Alexandra Park’s rich historical connection to the Suffrage Movement, whose iconic leader, Emmeline Pankhurst, was born and bred yards from the Park in the neighbouring Moss Side Estate.

For the Pankhurst in the Park programme, Legacy Fatale's commission will be a "Suffrajitsu" choreography piece inspired by Emmeline Pankhurst's bodyguards - women trained in the martial art of Bartitsu to form the elite secret society known as the “Amazons” - and an animal print extravaganza inspired by the ancient, warrior women of the Amazon.

Coco Dolle, Founding Leader and Curator of Legacy Fatale said:

"Taking cues from the legendary Amazon Warriors, the iconic Wonder Woman, and the fierce Suffragettes, we will integrate social protest, ancient symbology and Bartitsu practices paying homage to feminism's ferocious heritage."

The Spring programme builds on the success of Pankhurst in the Park 2014/15, and will again be accompanied by an integrated educational programme with investing partner St Mary’s CE Primary School in Moss Side. 

Following the launch event, an international artist collective will take up residence and begin an engagement project with local teenage girls, and a series of free events will take place in and around Alexandra Park. This will include free, age-friendly art workshops for older residents of Whalley Range and Moss Side, as well as a heritage cycle ride for all ages as part of Transport for Greater Manchester's Women on Wheels campaign.

Pankhurst in the Park presents Legacy Fatale

Pankhurst in the Park kicks off with a Suffrajitsu Wonder Warrior performance

Alexandra Art is kicking off the 'Pankhurst in the Park' 2016 programme of events by taking part in 'Wonder Women'. For this radical fem fest Alexandra Arts are working with New York based collective LEGACY FATALE, led by artists Coco Dolle and Shawn Bishop.

LEGACY FATALE is a performance choreography group founded in 2008 that celebrates the ancient nomadic warrior women of the Amazon. The collective represents a breed of hybrid historic and pop cultural icons, a cross-pollination of mythical and contemporary female archetypes.

LEGACY FATALE

A Thousand times Thy Light

BYRDCLIFFE CENTER

Woodstock, New York

2015 

This commissioned choreography piece is a fusion of Mrs Pankhurst’s ‘Suffrajitsu’ bodyguards - the elite secret society of “Amazons”, women trained in the martial art of Bartitsu - and an animal print extravaganza that will be popping up across the city (look out for locations via social media) between Tuesday 8th March (International Woman's Day) and Friday 11th March. This micro-residency will lead up to an interactive 'Wonder Warrior' performance and artist presentation as part of PitP's official launch party with DJ Andrea Trout at the 'Tea Hive' Pavilion in Alexandra Park on 12 March, 2016.

“Through a series of intensifying performances, Legacy Fatale will expand upon the lexicon of the female power struggle, bridging myth, history and pop culture. Taking cues from the legendary Amazon Warriors, the iconic Wonder Woman, and the fierce Suffragettes, we will integrate social protest, ancient symbology and Bartitsu practices paying homage to feminisms' ferocious heritage” - Coco Dolle and Shawn Bishop of LEGACY FATALE

Alexandra Arts

Pankhurst in the Park 2016 – presents Legacy Fatale

'Tea Hive' Pavilion, Alexandra Park, M16 8PJ Manchester

Date: 12 March, 2016

Times: 6pm - midnight (18+)

Free

Wonder Women

This event is part of Wonder Women, Manchester’s annual feminist festival. From 3-13 March 2016, 'Wonder Women' celebrates the women’s movement, which was born in our city, through film, art, music, walking tours, gallery takeovers, comedy and debate, asking how far we’ve come in 100 years – and how far we have yet to go.

Pankhurst in the Park

Pankhurst in the Park 2016 is an Arts Council England funded, public programme of free age-friendly events, artist commissions, an international artist in residency and educational programme, taking place in Manchester March – May 2016.

Stay up to date with with the 'Pankhurst in the Park' 2016 programme by following us:

Pankhurst in the Park 2016

Alexandra Arts is thrilled to announce that we have been awarded funds from Grants for the Arts for Pankhurst in the Park! Kicking off in spring 2016. Thank you Arts Council England!

'Pankhurst in the Park' 2016- taking inspiration from Alexandra Park's rich heritage connected to Iconic Suffragette, Emmeline Pankhurst; this years programme includes a International Artist Residency (AiR), artist commissions and age friendly engagement opportunities. Accompanied by an integrated Arts Awards educational program with St Mary's Primary School in Moss Side.

This year we will do things a bit different with the Artist in Residency – it will be done by invitation only. We secured our funding later then expected, so unfortunately we have run out time to do a open call for this years AiR.

We will continue to strengthen our ties with New York, capitalising on the connection made during 'Pankhurst in the Park' 2014. In the pipe line is a series of transatlantic exchanges and an exhibition in New York. Watch this space......

The full park programme, including the Artist in Residency and New York venue will be announced on Friday the 29th of February 2016.

Gifs by   Pablo Melhor

Gifs by Pablo Melhor