Gary Stevens creates live performances and video installations. He brings together different artists and performers: painters, sculptors, film-makers, photographers, actors, dancers and performers of all kinds to develop the projects, but asks them to work outside their specialism. There is an air of anonymity and uniformity, yet the performers cannot help but be distinctive and particular. The work is complex but the means are disarmingly simple and the experience of it, although challenging, is accessible and funny.
The major live work, since 1984, is the result of a long practical and material development. Gary’s unique use of text and speech is formal, yet seemingly casual. It often describes and defines a fictional space and situation but the conspicuous invention confronts us with something real. The work is radical, reflexive, wild and funny.
He won a Paul Hamlyn Award for Visual Arts (1998), a Foundation for Contemporary Performance Arts Award (New York) in 1996 and a One to One bursary from the Live Art Development Agency (2005). He has been involved in art education since 1988 and ran a regular monthly Performance Lab at Artsadmin from 1999-2009 and runs many international performance workshops. Video installations include Slow Life and the interactive work Wake Up and Hide which were commissioned and first shown at Matt’s Gallery, London in 2003 and 2007 respectively. More recent video installations Now and Again was shown at Southampton City Art Gallery in 2012. As was Containment that has been shown at the Griffin Gallery and at the Estorick Collection in London. He has toured internationally with live pieces such as Not Tony and Ape.
Mislaid was developed for Radar at Loughborough University in relation to studies in conversational analysis.
His current works includes an ensemble performance, One of Us performed as L’Un de Nous for L’Avant Seine in Colombes, France in 2014 and as Uno di Noi at Marche Teatro, Polverigi in Italy in 2018.
He is a Reader and tutor at the Slade School of Fine Art, UCL.