Dada’s Women

collaborative mixed-media works by composer Sonia Allori and artist Vaia Paziana based on 'Dada's Women' by Ruth Hemus

Dada’s Women intervention at the Hatton – with links to new music and video

Leave a comment

Arriving at the gallery in Newcastle:


The Gathering explained:

Gathering installation at the Hatton Gallery, Newcastle


Installing and settling in…


A glimpse through a neighbouring installation with guests:


Vaia and Sonia took inspiration from work titles that encapsulate HH’s subversive and ever-evolving way of life and art practice to create an audio-visual sense of ‘not being limited by orders nor borders and being on the move close to the ground maybe but never too grounded’.

Views of the installation: 


Sonia’s lyrics adapted from Hannah Höch quotes and invitations for creative responses for audience members and community groups:


Some fantastic responses from guests during the event:


Ruth and Sonia exploring the ‘Exploding Collage’ exhibition:


Links to Sonia’s music:

Memorial to an important lace shirt’

‘Never keep both feet on the ground’

and the video

Our team and what we are leaving behind for others to continue…


This gallery contains 4 photos

Leave a comment

Spring Soup Dada

Initiated and produced by artist Audrey O’Brien, the event Spring Soup Dada was held at Wasps Studios in Glasgow in March 2018. Audrey, whose practice and research has been heavily influenced by the Dadaist spirit, wanted to celebrate women artists of the Dada movement. Happily her research led her to Sonia and to our project.


Sonia Allori (left) Audrey O’Brien (centre) & participants

As well as an interest in Dada’s women, Audrey and Sonia have in common a commitment to social engagement and accessibility. Audrey describes her practice as ‘experience-based, engaging and experiential.’ Spring Soup Dada was billed as a chance to participate in ‘interactive chance techniques in a loosely arranged programme.’ A visual display produced and curated by Audrey highlighted five writers and artists: Céline Arnauld, Emmy Hennings, Hannah Höch, Sophie Taeuber and Elsa von Freytag-Loringhoven. Audrey’s programme included readings, poetry recitals and an impromptu co-tour with Ruth; an invitation to make duo-drawings inspired by Sophie Taeuber; and original musical composition and performances by Sonia. By drawing numbers out of a hat, participants (and chance) determined the performance order of sound files variously inspired by Dada artists’ words, newspaper headlines, and previous participative workshops. This was a community of co-creation. Oh, and there really WAS excellent soup, aptly provided by Soul Food Sisters, a co-op of enterprising, ethically-minded, migrant women with culinary talents and a manifesto with meaning.




I think that’s why Dada resonates with me…because you have the serious connotation and the highly developed ridiculous! – Sonia Allori.


Performing Dada’s Women at Tate Exchange

‘Theatres of Exchange’ – a partnership between Royal Holloway University and Tate Modern – gave us the opportunity to showcase and develop our project in the Switch Building on 13 February 2017.

Sonia’s specially-written soundtrack ‘Time Passing in Dada-Land’ welcomed participants and set an atmosphere of possibility that proved to be infectious. In an interactive presentation we sought to convey the pioneering interventions of Emmy Hennings and Sophie Taeuber in Zurich and Hannah Höch in Berlin.

Hennings was the inspiration for original visual and musical works brought to us by Vaia and Sonia. A digital animation produced and introduced by Vaia was overlaid with a score by Sonia – a perfect example of creative collaboration. Having brought both her clarinet and her voice, Sonia also performed an aria inspired by Hennings’ poems.

Dada's Women at Tate Modern

Photo: Andrew Mitchell

School and university students, families, and our invited visitors from Certitude were asked to get creative. In homage to Hannah Höch, some of our new Dada devotees cut and pasted visual fragments to create collages. Other initiates followed Tristan Tzara’s instruction ‘How to make a Dada poem,’ cutting out words from newspaper articles, shaking them in a bag, and rearranging with as much randomness as could be mustered.  Continue reading

Leave a comment

Dada Reloaded

Dada came to London on 21 May 2016 for Instant City Reloaded, when a delegation from the Cabaret Voltaire and Zurich University of the Arts came together with Central St. Martins to set up a provisional performance space. Our project team’s response to an open call for contributions to this twelve-hour event was accepted.

daisy chain fragments for Sisyphus [Dada edit] from Vaia Paziana on Vimeo.

A new digital animation by Vaia, with an original score by Sonia, called ‘daisy chain fragments for Sisyphus’, was shown on a big screen to an audience of artists, performers, students, scholars, visitors and curious passers-by.  Continue reading

Leave a comment

Dada’s Women – The story continues

Arty title shot! Thanks Don!

Arty title shot! Thanks Don!

Hello! This is Sonia Allori again with the next thrilling instalment (!?) of Dada’s Women – The Opera. To recap a little … I’m a musician and composer and part of the Flip Artists mentoring programme for disabled artists in 2015. The project I am developing (you may remember) concerns the creation of an opera with subject matter drawn from the female members of the early 20th Century Dada artistic movement.

Six months have passed since the research trip to Zurich in February and in the interim there has been a whole lot of planning, thinking, discussion, a bit more thinking and all framed within a healthy dose of self-doubt for good measure! I’ve since learned that this is a quite a normal stage in the development of a new work. This is by far the largest-scale work I have written and from the very beginning the process has been different and fairly overwhelming. This I have been assured is also quite a usual reaction!?
Continue reading

Leave a comment

Dada’s women in Switzerland

An introduction
Dr. Sonia Allori – Cabaret Voltaire, Zurich.

Dr. Sonia Allori – Cabaret Voltaire, Zurich.

Hello! This is Sonia Allori. I’m a musician and composer and move about the planet in a wheelchair which is sometimes frustrating and usually eventful (especially given my knack for finding pot-holes)!

The project I have been developing with the support of Flip Artists concerns the creation of an opera with subject matter drawn from the female members of the early 20th Century Dada artistic movement. 
Continue reading