“Gotta Do This First” – Part 2, 2019
Super Dakota is proud to present for the seventh edition of our online video screening: Gotta Do This First (2019), the second part of a video by Manchester-based artist Sadé Mica.
Sadé Mica is a post-internet artist whose art both observes and problematises the edges of identity. Their art moves deftly and playfully between many mediums, including video, costume, sculpture and performance.
Gotta Do This First is a celebration of the body explorations, its problematics and discoveries connected to gender and identity. While documenting themselves was for Sadé originally just about observing their body form and how they move, in the first part of the video Sadé insists to be seen and looked at. They pose and introduce their black queer non-binary body to the camera alongside Solange dancing in her apartment.
The second part of the video starts with Sadé fitting and trying an asymmetrical dark red top. This “binder” as they point out, shows how the body appears and morphs to the outside. They are posing with their hands in the pockets and confident gaze. The artist invites us to enter their studio and see how they rap-dance on Mura Masa & NAO’s “Complicated”. The freedom that the body and the movement represents is for Sadé a journey of exploration and enlightenment.
Exposing themselves provide Sadé with a place to observe their posturing and control it and free it from gendered expectations. The artist reproduces elegant poses taken from life-drawing, traditionally a white and binary world. To the viewer, Sadé’s poses might seem serene and resplendent, but in real life they might have been witnessed by onlookers with bemusement, discomfort or hostility. Sadé’s work invites us to take part in and give ourselves a space to explore and accept our own notion of the self and the other.
Greg Thorpe states in his feature on Sadé Mica: Nothing Unseen, that “both queer and internet cultures are in rapid acceleration and they are a person of both worlds. Online has more or less always been a place they could turn to. Their art practice, their exposure to different expressions of gender, their sense of a wider and different world from home, school and university; these things have all been informed by their internet life.”
Sadé refers to their work as the catalyst of the vehicle for approaching their identity. In second year of university, they started making work about themselves. They didn’t really have anyone to have those conversations with. There were people who come out as gay but again it was a very binary thing, so they started using their work as a vehicle to explore those parts of themselves. Because it was art, it wasn’t fixed, it was always changing and growing. For Sadé it meant they could change, they figure out themselves. They didn’t just have to KNOW! It definitely made them become more comfortable with themselves.
Sadé Mica (b. 1995) is a British artist living in Manchester. They hold BA in Visual Arts from University of Salford, Manchester. Sadé’s current practice explores their experiences navigating the world as a queer, black person and the nuances that brings in fleshing out an identity that is often met with contempt and confusion. They use photography, textiles, print and film alongside other mediums to document their body, emotions, ever in flux gender presentation and the facets of their identity they feel most pressing in regards to their gaze and worldview. Their work was featured in several exhibitions at key galleries and museums, including the Castlefield gallery and the Outpost gallery. Their film Posturin was commissioned by Tate Collective for Black History Month.