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.
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.