In their heyday, neither was averse to shocking: Michael Clark's 80s dancers with their bare bums, for example, were more than matched by Jarvis Cocker's stage invasion at the 1996 Brit Awards in protest against Michael Jackson's performance.
It was almost inevitable that their paths should cross; and when they did they generated a vital and thrilling collaboration. They first worked together in WHO’S ZOO? at the 2012 Whitney Biennial in New York, during which Cocker’s former band, Relaxed Muscle, performed live on stage.
In the same year, Clark brought New Work to the Barbican, who co-commissioned the piece. For the second half of the programme Jarvis performed live alongside Clark's dancers, an electrifying collaboration that proved beyond doubt these two stage animals had been born to work together.
Now, with Barbican artistic associate Clark celebrated in the exhibition Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer, Jarvis Cocker has provided his own reaction: A Musical Response to Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer. Cocker said: 'Take a look for yourself. Walk around, and slowly it will start to dawn on you, as it did on me: dance is the language of the human body. And nobody speaks it better than Michael Clark.'
In this short film, his recently created new band, JARV IS perform numbers from their latest album Beyond the Pale, as well as covers from Velvet Underground and Michael Clark's punk collaborators, The Fall, in the exhibition's own settings: Charles Atlas A Prune Twin (2020), the recreated set of Clark’s collaboration with The Fall for I Am Curious, Orange (1988), and in Sarah Lucas’s installation.
Filmed by Andy Hul, A Musical Response to Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer premiered on the Barbican website earlier this month and is available to view free. You can watch it here.
|What||JARV IS: A Musical Response to Michael Clark: Cosmic Dancer|
|Where||Online | MAP|
16 Oct 20 – 16 Oct 21, Available on demand. Dur.: 20 mins approx