Adam Broomberg & Oliver Chanarin’s site-specific work for ﬁg-2 interrogates the landscape that surrounds the ICA Studio, incorporating the Mall, Downing Street, Horse Guards Parade and Buckingham Palace; an area characterised by daily military parades and other displays of state power. Broomberg & Chanarin have invited a bouffon or ‘Dark Clown’ to respond to this highly militarised environment. The ﬁgure of the bouffon, originated in medieval times and was used as a term to describe someone ostracised from society and relegated to the margins of the city – apart from one day of the year, when he or she was invited to the Royal court with explicit permission to ridicule the authorities.
For one week Broomberg & Chanarin will transform the ﬁg-2 premises into a ‘green screen’ studio for the bouffon to inhabit. Her grotesque and vulgar presence suggests a counterpoint to the military codes of discipline and hierarchical order on display in the surrounding streets. The live performance, consisting of slapstick routines and gallows humour, will take place during the opening event on Monday and on Thursday evening, simultaneously merging with video footage of the changing of the guards and other military ceremonies, accompanied by a raucous soundtrack, composed by drummer Kid Millions. Please book your tickets for the Thursday performance here.
ﬁg-2 opens each Monday 6 – 8 pm, and continues from Tue – Sun 11 am – 6 pm. ﬁg-2 is open late on Thursdays until 9 pm to coincide with the ICA late openings.