April 10-15, 2018
University of Houston Cynthia Woods Mitchell Center for the Arts
Photo by Leah Maghanoy, Courtesy of the Artist and the Art Gallery of Ontario
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Kevin Beasley

Movement V: Ballroom

Visual artist Kevin Beasley creates a site-specific sculptural and sound installation at the iconic Eldorado Ballroom, which served the Third Ward with a who’s who of the great blues and jazz players from the 1940s through the 1970s. Beasley explores cultural, personal, and historical contexts—and related materials—in assembling his art.

Date / Time / Site(s)
About The Project


Installation + Performance

Enter a historic ballroom, one that’s utterly dark inside, lit only by exit signs and a series of lights activated by sound.

Renowned artist Kevin Beasley is taking over the Eldorado Ballroom, the iconic Third Ward venue, and creating an original site-specific sculptural and sound installation. Sixteen sculptural works amplify the sounds produced by the movement of visitors, with the sound in turn producing light, creating a combination of a movement-based performance and listening session, an installation that exists—visually and aurally—only with the movement of bodies and a physical engagement between visitors and the space.

The Eldorado Ballroom featured a who’s who of the great blues and jazz players—and was the place to cut loose—from the 1940s to the 1970s. Beasley explores the cultural, personal, and historical contexts of the materials and spaces with which he assembles his art, then radically transforms and reinterprets them. Movement V: Ballroom continues a series of experiments in materiality and sound, exploring the fading in and out of culture, and the erasure of predominately black cultural spaces.

On April 22 at 8pm, Beasley will engage the installation with his own movements for a performance.

Movement V: Ballroom is part of Performing the Neighborhood, a five-year partnership between the Mitchell Center and Project Row Houses to commission and present major performance-based works by contemporary artists in the Third Ward neighborhood of Houston. These large-scale co-commissions will draw upon the neighborhood, as well as the rich, often complicated intersection between the university campus and its surrounding community.

Read Our Exclusive Interview With The Artist
About The Artist

Kevin Beasley works with sculpture, installation, sound, and video. His sculptures evolve out of a process that meshes found materials—personal items, clothing, studio debris, odd bits of machinery and past technologies—into composite objects. His work has been exhibited at The Whitney Museum of American Art, the Museum of Modern Art, and the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.