Joseph Funnell & Carlos Maria Romero (aka Atabey Mamasita)
Joseph Funnell is an interdisciplinary artist, dancer and activist of Afro-Caribbean and British descent. Working with movement, text, images and film their research-based practice considers the emancipatory potential of performing agency within contexts of historic negation. As a queer person of colour they are interested in creating ways to resist the commodification of identity, instead employing queerness and blackness as critical positions from which to interrogate structures that (re)produce value and privilege. They are particularly interested in the appropriation and exchange of black/ queer bodies as cultural capital and the psychological alienation of black and queer subjectivities within these processes. Joseph maintains a choreographic interest in sensuality as a gateway to considering the radical potential of embodiment through dance and somatic practices.
The politics of Joseph’s practice are mirrored in their work as community activist. As an active member of Lesbians and Gays Support the Migrants and a volunteer for Southwark Day Centre of Asylum Seekers, they advocate for migrant and LGBTQIA+ rights through campaigning, direct action and support work.
They have presented solo performance work at: Steakhouse Live, Slow Sunday, 2020; Slap Festival 2020; The Albany, London, 2019; CLAY, Leeds, 2019; and Centrum Sztuki Współczesnej Zamek Ujazdowski, Warsaw, 2018. As a dancer Joseph has also collaborated with and performed for artists, including Adham Faramawy (Tate Britain, Somerset house, London Science Museum), Alex Baczynski-Jenkins (Whitechapel Galley, London; Palais de Tokyo, Paris; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam), Pan Daijing (Tate Modern), and Ula Sickle (Center for Contemporary Art Ujazdowski Castle, Warsaw).
Carlos Maria Romero aka Atabey Mamasita (Barranquilla, 1979), is a Colombian Caribbean multidisciplinary artist based between London and Margate, UK working with dance, performance, visual arts, pedagogy, activism, cultural engineering and occasionally music and curating. He is founding member of SPIT! - Sodomites, Perverts, Inverts Together!, a collective who performs since 2017 (at Frieze Projects, London) a series of queer manifestos; and Vividero Colectivo, whose projects seek to reclaim marginalised social practices and architectural sites as cultural heritage.
Atabey developed in 2016 Vogue-Chi, a movement practice for people aged 50+ that evolved into a multi-generational queer and allies safe space for self-expression; in 2018 A House of Ecstatic Virality, a dance and conversation practice, in collaboration with Latinx and Polish volunteers, creating a life affirming environment for people to explore HIV related issues; in 2019 Like a Ghost Dance/The Heartbeat Spiral, a dance meditation to harness constructive aspects of the dying process; and in 2020 in collaboration with Joseph Funnell Hurakan Caress, a self-intimacy movement practice with mobile phones and Caribbean rhythms.
Maria Romero’s most recent performances HQ - (I Feel so Mezzaniney), a collaboration with Steven Warwick, and the series Muy Serio have been presented at Museo de Arte Moderno de Medellín, Volksbühne Berlin, London Contemporary Music Festival, Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge, Jupiter Artland in Edinburg and Montréal, Arts Interculturels among other places.