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T-shirt stripper as culture critic?

"Anyone can take their t-shirt off. It's not even funny." is a visitor cited by the Dance Theatre Journal in 2001 on occasion of the performance 'Shirtology' by Jérôme Bel. The author of the article continues and writes about the understanding of the audience: "It's safe to say they didn't get the point."

Now, the performance 'Shirtology' is the opening event of the 'BMW Tate Live: Performance Room'-series of art performances which are broadcasted live online (without any filters like regional exclusions or other censorships!) from the Tate Modern in London from 22 March 2012 on.

In the (originally 25 minutes) performance 'Shirtology' (premiered 1997), French dancer/choreographer Jérôme Bel (born 1964, living in Paris) wears different vintage t-shirts with numbers, slogans, pictures and other 'texts' which stand for global capitalist culture. During the performance, he strips t-shirts off/removes messages and dresses up into new clothes/with new meanings.

"Bel's work explores the relationship between choreography and popular culture; and dancer and spectator, often using humour as a device to break the usual formality of a theatre setting." tate.org.uk

It is announced that one performance per month will be transmitted online - just as it happens before the camera: Pablo Bronstein on 26 April, Emily Roysdon (31 May), Harrell Fletcher (28 June), and Joan Jonas (mid-July/September). Details about the scheduled events on tate.org.uk.

Video: Jérôme Bel speaks about 'Shirtology' on occasion of the live performance at the BMW Tate Live event on 22 March 2012 (20:00 - 21:00 London time). On youtube.com/user/tate, questions can be posted to the first artist of the series. Jérôme Bel will answer them after his performance on 22 March.




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