Actional Poetics – ASH SHE HE: The Performance Actuations of Alastair MacLennan, 1971–2020

Eds. Sandra Johnston, Cherie Driver and Paula Blair


A retrospective monograph on the pioneering performance artist and teacher Alastair MacLennan.

This is the most comprehensive study of Alastair MacLennan’s extensive performance practice, nationally and internationally renowned for its contribution to the field of performance art. The essays in this collection explore MacLennan’s art practice, its influence on the Belfast art scene, and its relationships with wider art histories. 

The book places MacLennan’s work in its proper historical context, featuring outstanding archival visual documentation alongside new commissioned essays and interviews, none of which have been previously published. The essays range from descriptive to interpretive: some set the work in historical context while others provide pertinent biography. This variety is appropriate—and perhaps even necessary—in looking at the work of a living artist whose work is particularly complex and challenging. Each writer addresses the art on their own terms, and the resulting essays provide an approachable presentation of a multilayered body of work. 

ISBN 9781789383720

Published by Intellect Books, Spring 2021. Paperback, 220 x 220 mm.

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