*Banquet for Pantagruel*, 2015, at MoMA PS1 as part of VW Sunday Sessions. © 2015 MoMA PS1, New York. Photo: Charles Roussel

Banquet For Pantagruel, Leigha Mason
A Performance and Film Event

With live soundscape by Emil Bognar-Nasdor and a special performance by Genesis Breyer P-Orridge

The triumphant nature of every banquet renders it not only a fit conclusion but also a framework for a number of essential events. The body transgresses here its own limits: it swallows, devours, rends the world apart, is enriches and grows at the world’s expense…Here man tastes the world, introduces it into his body, makes it part of himself.
Mikhail Bakhtin

Banquet For Pantagruel is a transformative environment, which simultaneously seduces and repulses. It revolves around a banquet table vanitas with a new video projected above. Emil Bognar-Nasdor of Dawn of Humans performs a live soundscape to accompany the banquet.

The performance moves through contexts ranging from a peaceful evening sky to the inside of a diseased person’s lungs, in an interrogation of the intersections between social and physical revulsion and the spaces in which they play.

Leigha Mason grounds this visual and spatial displacement by using the performance as a site of production, filming throughout and live-streaming her footage on a projector-screen-pinata, which hangs over the banquet awaiting the climax.

In a contemporary condition where bodies are so casually mutable, why should the politics of every day life be different? If we can recognize any system as constructed so too is it changeable.
-Leigha Mason

MoMA PS1’s acclaimed VW Sunday Sessions performance series welcomes visitors to experience and participate in live art. Since its founding in 1976, MoMA PS1 has offered audiences one of the most extensive programs of live performance in the world. VW Sunday Sessions highlights artists responding to contemporary social and political issues through a wide variety of creative and critical lenses. Encompassing performance, music, dance, conversation, and film, the series develops and presents projects by established and emerging artists, scholars, activists, and other cultural instigators. With a focus on artists that blur and break traditional genre boundaries, VW Sunday Sessions embraces the communities in New York City that create and sustain artistic practice.

Since 2012, VW Sunday Sessions has presented a commissioning program resulting in new work by Trajal Harrell, Mårten Spångberg, Anne Imhof, Tobias Madison and Matthew Lutz Kinoy, Hannah Black, and Colin Self. Additionally, the VW Dome Artist Residency offers a platform for creative development and experimentation for artists at all stages of the creative process.


Sunday Sessions is organized by Jenny Schlenzka, Associate Curator with Alex Sloane, Curatorial Assistant and Rosey Selig-Addiss, Associate Producer.

Sunday Sessions 2014-15 is dedicated to Mike Skinner, 1974-2014

Volkswagen logo

Sunday Sessions and the VW Dome at MoMA PS1 are made possible by a partnership with Volkswagen of America.

Major support is provided by MoMA’s Wallis Annenberg Fund for Innovation in Contemporary Art through the Annenberg Foundation.

This performance is part of VW Sunday Sessions.