Emma Leach


Here nor There

May 1 2011, 14 00 – 15 00, Hawley Square


For a number of years a giant news ticker was displayed on the U.S. diplomatic mission’s building on Malecon drive, Havana. Streaming news and political messages, the ticker angered the Cuban government because of the anti-socialist statements it displayed. They retaliated by erecting anti-US billboards that blocked the news ticker from view. The event titled Here Nor There explores the tit-for-tat patriotism of political enmity: Follow the movements of the ticker and a flag bearer around Hawley Square to witness this intriguing form of conflict play out and to decide, “Which message is correct?”


For this performance of Here nor There, a set of performers will carry signs that together spell out words. They will roam around a crowded space, find a good spot to display, then fan out with their message. This message alternates between 'HERE IS BETTER' and 'THERE IS BETTER'. They are constantly pursued by a flag-bearer. The performers hold their message until the woman waves her black flag - this is their cue to fold up their signs and disperse back into the crowd. This work will play-out in the background of Hawley Square so the performers weave through the crowds and display the messages at intervals.


Emma Leach works in performance, writing and installation. Her works have a strong focus on narrative, using play and observation to adapt an original story - often a news article. She has a particular interest in the by-products of large political or cultural events. Previous work includes hiring a wildlife photographer to capture her dressed as a cow, learning English tea ceremony on the London Underground, and training students to ape gallery assistants.


Click here to find Hawley Square on a map.




Limbo 2010