25% Rectification at Tate Liverpool

Da Vinci's Mona Lisa, with a moustache and goatee beard drawn on by Marcel Duchamp.
L.H.O.O.Q. by Marcel Duchamp (detail).

It’s been embargoed for ages, but I can now publicise that I’m taking part in We are Invisible, We are Visible, a nationwide day of interventions in art galleries to celebrate both the fifty year mark of the beginning of the Disability Arts Movement and the 102nd anniversary of the 1st Dada International Fair with artists including Hannah Höch, Frans Arp, and Max Ernst. The centenary actually being at 102 years is a nice, but unintentional, Dada touch brought about the coronavirus pandemic.

On July 2nd 2022 31 disabled, D/deaf and neurodivergent artists will appear simultaneously at most of the major public art galleries in the UK with artworks and interventions inspired by the disruptive spirit of Dada, absurdism and Surrealism. I’ll be at Tate Liverpool performing 25% Rectification. This is related to the fact that about a quarter of people are disabled, neurodivergent or D/deaf: for fans of strict accuracy and/or pedantry it’s actually between 18% and 22% in the UK, but I’m taking a bit of artistic licence and rounding up. The point is that we just don’t see much evidence of that huge proportion of the population either in the canon of Western art or as representation among the practising, living artists who get commissioned and shown right now.

So taking a lead from Marcel Duchamp I’m going to literally draw this missing large minority into the picture using reproductions of art from Tate’s collections. That’s where the “rectification” comes in, since this is how Duchamp referred to the found objects he’d turned into new art works by altering or defacing them. Some iconic works of art in the Tate collections will be getting free hearing aids, wheelchairs, prosthetics, guide dogs, medication, etc. courtesy of me. More details nearer the time.

Commissioned by DASH, supported by Tate and the Tate+ Network, and made possible by DASH winning the 2021 Ampersand Foundation Award for this project.