When you think of the words temporary, immersive, radical, or cathartic, do you think of art? TBA:22, Portland Institute for Contemporary Art’s Time Based Art festival, is back for its twentieth year of extraordinary and groundbreaking performance art this September 8-18. Featuring everything from drag and experimental music to Black feasts and dance parties, TBA:22 is sure to surprise and delight.
Founded in 2002 “to bring artists and audiences together,” the festival’s mission is “to think about art and ideas, to witness the art of our time, to mark time with living artists, to feel alive in this place and at this specific time .” This year, that manifests in a spectacular line up of international, national, and regional artists and performers.
Opening night will start with a bang, featuring a headlining performance by Los Angeles-based musician San Cha. The multimedia performance will celebrate San Cha’s original compositions, which she blends and queers with Mexican mariachi and bolero standards. Next up: multidisciplinary artist Lapaushi (of Portland’s Noche Libre, a Latine femme DJ collective) will keep the party going with a DJ set sure to get your body moving. With indoor and outdoor spaces, an on-site bar, limited edition merch, and dreamy summer dance party vibes, it’ll be a night to remember!
“One of the exciting things about this year’s TBA line up is that during the pandemic we’ve been able to support a lot of artists in the creation of the work,” says Erin Boberg Doughton, PICA’s Artistic Director and Curator of Performance. “Some have been in residence at PICA, and in several instances, we have the world or west coast premiere of the project, like Anthony Hudson’s Clown Down 2: Clown Out of Water. We’re excited about supporting Oregon artists to create work that will reach a national and even international audience.”
Carla Rossi is Portland’s favorite drag clown, an immortal trickster performed by Oregon-based Indigenous artist Anthony Hudson (Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde). Clown Down 2: Clown Out of Water is the world premiere of Hudson’s hilarious farce that tells the tale of Carla trapped on a rock in the middle of the rising ocean with a seagull burdened with IBS. “Anthony’s work is enjoyable, funny, subversive, political, and seeks to entertain as well as educate,” says Doughton.
In addition to individual performances and events, PICA launched NIGHT SCHOOL in collaboration with the Pacific Northwest College of Art. “NIGHT SCHOOL is one of the newer programs curated by PICA Artistic Director & Curator of Public Engagement Roya Amirsoleymani,” says Doughton. “It’s a series of performance-lectures created by artist-scholars, so it won’t be dry art lecture. The artists are really experimenting with the form and involving performance. Think of it as a casual nighttime lecture that’s not like going to school, but has the immediacy of hearing the artist talking about their own work.”
Buy your passes now for TBA:22, September 8–18 at PICA in Portland.