The first UK exhibition dedicated to the American writer Kathy Acker and her written, spoken and performed work comes to the ICA.
Acker was an experimental writer whose work spanned novels, plays and essays on topics such as post-modernism and feminism, and infiltrated the avant-garde art and literary scenes of New York, San Diego, San Francisco, Seattle, Paris and London in the late 20th century. .
For the first time in the UK, I, I, I, I, I, I, I Kathy Acker brings together excerpts from Acker’s writing with works by other artists and writers, video and audio documentation of Acker’s performative appearances in various cultural and media contexts, and documents and books from her personal archive.
Through her prolific writing, Acker experimented with many forms of text including distorted language, hybridised fiction and autobiography ‘plagiarising’ the work of other authors and introducing maps, drawings and diagrams.
Her work explores how meaning and identity are constructed from language, examining the patriarchal and political. She provocatively confronted the strained relationship between desire and reality within culture, sex, the body, war, money, the family, mythology, colonialism, sickness, and the city in ways that are still relevant in current times.
The exhibition illuminates the complexities within Acker’s written, spoken and performed work, as she moved between exposing and inhabiting the dynamics of power.