In works that are more interdisciplinary, more interactive, and more kinetic than ever before, 16 international artists reinterpret traditional notions of spectacle, performance, and the gallery space.
The World as a Stage—the title inspired by one of Shakespeare’s best-known monologues, “All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players” (from As You Like It )—examines how a sense of theater or spectacle has had an impact on the museum experience, redefining the roles of spectator and participant.
Works envelop the viewer in spectacle, as in the moving mirrors of Jeppe Hein’s Rotating Labyrinth or Rita McBride’s Arena, a sculpture in the form of stadium seating that places the viewer at center stage. Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster’s installation, Séance de Shadows II, depends on viewer participation as the visitor’s silhouette performs on a wall bathed in atmospheric blue light. Tino Seghal’s work This is New greets visitors as soon as they arrive at the admissions desk, turning an everyday exchange into impromptu theater.
The World as a Stage is organized by Jessica Morgan, Curator of Contemporary Art, and Catherine Wood, Curator of Contemporary Art and Performance, Tate Modern.
The artists featured in the exhibition include Pawel Althamer (Poland), Cezary Bodzianowsky (Poland), Ulla von Brandenberg (Germany), Jeremy Deller (UK), Trisha Donnelly (U.S.), Geoffrey Farmer (Canada), Andrea Fraser (U.S.), Dominique Gonzales-Foerster (France), Jeppe Hein (Germany), Renata Lucas (Brazil), Rita McBride (U.S./Germany), Roman Ondák (Slovakia), Markus Schinwald (Germany), Tino Sehgal (Germany), Catherine Sullivan (U.S./Germany), and Mario Ybarra, Jr. (U.S.).