Walker Art Center presents Faye Driscoll: Come On In, Artist’s First Solo Exhibition

If I say ‘thank you for coming,’ it implies that you are already there.” —Faye Driscoll

Faye Driscoll: Thank You For Coming: Space. Photo: Gemma Galina

One of dance/performance’s most astonishing experimental voices, Faye Driscoll wraps up her Walker-supported trilogy—Thank You For Coming—with a moving requiem on art, the body, loss, and human connectivity. Space builds on and diverges from Driscoll’s earlier works, beloved by audiences across the country, with “an exhilaratingly personal culmination of the series” (Artforum). The intimate new performance piece, presented within an immersive installation on the McGuire stage, is informed by art-historical imagery and emerges as a collaborative creation between the artist, her astute design collaborators, and the audience. Contains mature content.

Through an alchemy of bodies and voices, objects and live sound, choreographer Faye Driscoll (US, b. 1975) conjures worlds that are, like ourselves, alive and forever changeable. The artist poses performance as one of the last secular social spaces, where the vulnerability, necessity, and complexities of our everyday relationships are heightened and made palpable. Driscoll’s projects draw on our shared power to question and shape the structures that govern our behavior. Characterizing her work as “dances that are mistaken for plays,” she creates sets designed to break apart; musical scores made from the performers’ stomps and vocalizations; and props that are worn, used, and reused.

Faye Driscoll. Courtesy the artist.

Faye Driscoll is a Bessie Award-winning performance maker who has been hailed as a “startlingly original talent” (Roslyn Sulcas, The New York Times) and “a postmillenium postmodern wild woman” (Deborah Jowitt, The Village Voice). Her work has been presented nationally at the Wexner Center for the Arts, the Walker Art Center, The Institute for Contemporary Art/Boston, MCA/Chicago and BAM/Brooklyn Academy of Music and internationally at La Biennale di Venezia, Festival d’Automne à Paris, Croatian National Theatre in Zagreb, Melbourne Festival, Belfast International Arts Festival, Onassis Cultural Centre in Athens and Centro de Arte Experimental (Universidad Nacional de San Martín) in Buenos Aires. Driscoll has been awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Creative Capital award, a NEFA National Dance Project Award, MAP Fund Grant, a French-US Exchange in Dance Grant, Jerome Foundation Grant, a Foundation for Contemporary Art Grant, a Doris Duke Artist Award, and a US Artists Doris Duke Fellowship and she is the recipient of the 2018 Jacob’s PIllow Dance Award. She recently choreographed for Young Jean Lee’s Straight White Men on Broadway and for Madeline’s Madeline, a film by Josephine Decker.

In her trilogy of performances Thank You For Coming, Driscoll engages with the political as well as physical and emotional states, at once balancing poignancy and tenderness with irreverent wit and humor, summoning “the unnamed forces that surge between the viewer and the viewed.” Each of the works in the series—Attendance (2014), Play (2016), and Space (2019)—takes a distinct form, whether exploring rituals of storytelling, ways that we speak through and for each other, or human connectivity and loss.

Faye Driscoll: Come On In, the artist’s first solo museum exhibition, was developed by Driscoll and her long-term artistic collaborators Nick Vaughan and Jake Margolin. Exploring human interdependence and connectivity, the show draws from the themes of the trilogy, which was presented and co-commissioned by the Walker and subsequently toured around the world over the past six years. Bringing the immersive experience of her theater works into the gallery, Driscoll invites us to become active participants through a series of prompts and subtle directives that leads us on a shared journey.

Faye Driscoll: Come On In and Faye Driscoll’s Thank You For Coming: Space are presented as part of the Walker’s multiyear Interdisciplinary Initiative, made possible by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, which specifically supports the institution’s commitment to artists working at the intersection of the performing and visual arts, both making work and presenting it across gallery, stage, and public space. Between 2016 and 2020, the Interdisciplinary Initiative has supported projects with artists Maria Hassabi, Theaster Gates, Laure Prouvost, Jason Moran, Rabih Mroué, and Meg Stuart, as well as Resonance: A Sound Art Marathon.

Faye Driscoll: Come On In opens Thursday, February 27, 2020 at 5 pm and runs through Sunday, June 14, 2020.

Curators: Pavel Pyś, curator, Visual Arts; with Molly Hanse, curatorial assistant, Performing Arts

Presented in conjunction with Thank You For Coming: Space, performed in the Walker’s McGuire Theater March 5–8, 2020.


Opening Reception with Faye Driscoll
Thursday, February 27, 2020, 6 – 8 pm
Garden Terrace Room
Free; part of Target Free Thursday Nights

Join the celebration of the opening of the new exhibition Faye Driscoll: Come On In.

Meet the artist, enjoy light snacks and a cash bar, and be the first to experience the installation, which is the choreographer’s first time working in the context of the gallery. Remarks with Faye Driscoll and curators Pavel Pyś and Philip Bither will take place at 6:30 pm.

Faye Driscoll: Thank You For Coming: Space
Thursday–Saturday, March 5, 6 and 7 at 8 pm
Sunday, March 8 at 2 pm
$26 ($20.80 Walker members)

Walker Commission