My Barbarian is a Los Angeles based collaborative group consisting of Malik Gaines, Jade Gordon and Alexandro Segade. The trio makes site-responsive performances and video installations that use theatrical play to draw allegorical narratives out of historical dilemmas, mythical conflicts, and current political crises.
My Barbarian had solo exhibitions with Steve Turner Contemporary in Los Angeles (2008, 2009) and at Participant, Inc. in New York (2009). In 2008, the group made a collaborative exhibition with the sculptor Lara Schnitger at Museum Het Domain, Sittard, NL, which, in 2009, traveled to the Luckman Gallery in Los Angeles. Since 2004, My Barbarian has shown work in group exhibitions and/or performance programs at venues including REDCAT; LACMA; Hammer Museum; LAXART; Schindler House; LACE; Steve Turner Contemporary, Los Angeles; New Museum; Whitney Museum; Studio Museum in Harlem; Participant, Inc.; P.S.1; Joe's Pub; Anton Kern Gallery, New York; Yerba Buena Center, San Francisco; MOCA, Miami; Hyde Park Art Center, Chicago; Aspen Art Museum; Contemporary Arts Forum, Santa Barbara; Vox Populi, Philadelphia; Estacion Tijuana & Lui Velazquez, Tijuana Mexico; The Power Plant, Toronto; De Appel, Amsterdam; Peres Projects, Berlin; Torpedo, Oslo; El Matadero, Madrid; Galleria Civica, Trento, Italy; Center for Contemporary Art, Tel Aviv; Townhouse Gallery, Cairo. My Barbarian was included in the 2005 and 2007 Performa Biennials, the 2006 and 2008 California Biennials, the 2007 Montreal Biennial, and the 2009 Baltic Triennial. The group has made two full-length albums of music from its performances: Cloven Soft-Shoe (2004) and California Sweet & the 7 Pagan Rights (2008).
Gaines (b. 1973, Visalia, California) received a B.A. in History from UCLA (1996) and an MFA in Writing from Cal Arts' School of Critical Studies (1999) and is a faculty member in the School of Theater at Cal Arts. Gordon (b. 1975, Santa Rosa, California) received a BA in Theater at USC (2008) and teaches at the Stella Adler School in Los Angeles. Segade (b. 1973, San Diego, California) received a BA in English from UCLA (1996), studied in the School of Film and Television at USC (1997–1998), received an MFA in Interdisciplinary Studio Art from UCLA (2009), and also currently works as a solo artist.
- Malik Gaines
- Jade Gordon
- Alex Segade
In 2016, My Barbarian presented a residency and exhibition at the New Museum entitled The Audience is Always Right. The piece drew elements of theater, visual arts, critical practice, and specifically performance to theatricalize social issues.
Awards and honors
My Barbarian won a Creative Capital grant in 2012 for their project, Post-Living Ante-Action Theater. The piece premiered at the New Museum as The Audience is Always Right. They also won a Foundation for Contemporary Arts Grants to Artists award (2013).
- Norwood Cheek (2001–2004)
- Andy Ouchi (2001–2006)
- Lara Schnitger (2004-9)
- Pearl C Hsiung (2002–2010)
- Scott Martin (2004–2008)
- Matthew Monahan (2004)
- Giles Miller (2004–2009)
- Richard Lee 2011
- "Official Website". Retrieved 15 October 2013.
- "My Barbarian: The Audience is Always Right". www.newmuseum.org. Retrieved 2017-02-28.
- "Creative Capital - Investing in Artists who Shape the Future". creative-capital.org. Retrieved 2017-02-28.
- "My Barbarian :: Foundation for Contemporary Arts". www.foundationforcontemporaryarts.org. Retrieved 2018-04-19.
- Official Website
- LA Weekly Review
- Artists Page on Steve Turner Contemporary
- Artnet Review
- New Yorker
- Interview on Fanzine
- TimeOut New York Review
- Art In America Review
- Critical Review
- Review of a performance in Germany
- My Barbarian performance in Tijuana at Lui Velazquez as part of the 2008 California Biennial.
- My Barbarian by Andrea Fraser Bomb