Rose English British, b. 1950

Rose English is best known for her contributions to the development of performance art in Britain. Emerging from the conceptual art, dance and feminist scenes of the 1970s, English has developed an extensive interdisciplinary practice over the past 40 years, honing a unique artistic vocabulary that has consistently analysed and commentated on aesthetics, politics and philosophy, including aspects of British pop culture, from show girls and show horses to magic acts and pantomime. Her work challenges conventional understandings of both feminism and femininity through the combination of forms with which she engages, including theatre, circus, poetry and fine art, producing acclaimed performances but also works in other media such as film and installation.


English has been writing, directing and performing her work internationally for over 40 years in venues as varied as old music-hall palaces, ice rinks, Tate Britain, Queen Elizabeth Hall, the Adelaide Festival and Lincoln Center in New York. Selected solo exhibitions include 'Remember This!' as part of Circus Originals at Somerset House, London, UK (2018); 'Rose English for the Grand Tour,' Harley Gallery, Welbeck Estate, UK (2016); 'A Premonition of the Act,' Camden Arts Centre, London, UK (2015–2016); 'The Eros of Understanding,' Kunsthal Charlottenborg, Copenhagen, Denmark (2014–2015). Her work has also been featured in significant group presentations, including 'FEMINISMS' at Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona (CCCB), Barcelona, Spain (2019); 'DRAG: Self-portraits and Body Politics,' Hayward Gallery, London, UK (2018); 'Of Other Spaces: where does gesture become event', Cooper Gallery, Dundee, UK (2016–2017); 'Test Run: Performance in Public,' Modern Art Oxford, UK (2015); and 'Keywords: Art, Culture and Society in the 1980's Britain,' Tate Liverpool, UK (2014), amongst others. English's work is also featured in Tate Britain's all-female rehang of its collection 'Sixty Years' from April 2019.


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