Terrorised Identities


Poulomi Desai, Simon Underwood

30 August – 9 September 2003

Ecology Pavilion Mile End Park, Grove Road, Bow, London E3 5TW.

Usurp presents a polemical celebration of recent resistance to neo-liberal imperialism in a group exhibition addressing identity covering five artistic disciplines from net graphics, painting, drawing, through to three-dimensional work, and sculpture.

Exploring the impact of the Terrorism Laws in our society, the new racial/religious stereotypes and phantasms being created about Muslim communities, and the increased surveillance/intimidation of political activists.

We also highlight the challenges that are being formed to counteract the War on Terror that is in fact terrorising migrant communities.

We have created workshops, improvised performances, and exhibitions within local venues


Poulomi Desai, Simon Underwood

9 August – 30 September 2003

A Workshop by Usurp (Poulomi Desai and Simon Underwood)

This workshop takes a critical look at various ways both personal and collective identities are constructed and performed in the digital domain, and especially on the net.

In particular we shall focus on using the Internet to explore issues around global and local identities and how this has transformed the nature of political and artistic activity in the light of George Bush’s ‘War on Terror’.

Participants are encouraged to bring objects, photos, documents, books or any other personal items they wish to contribute to the making of a ‘digital group identity’ to be presented and made available on the World Wide Web.

Any personal items participants wish to contribute will be digitally photographed or scanned during the workshop session and persons will not be asked to part with original items.

This workshop is open to anyone with an interest in issues of identity, politics, globalisation and artistic practices on the net. Participants do not need to be experienced Internet users. However a basic level of computer use would be an advantage.

Usurp are a loose group of tactical media artists who work around issues of identity, technology, community, politics and performance.


Poulomi Desai

30 August – 9 September 2003

Usurp presents “Terrorised Identities” Evolving Performance Sound and Projections. Exploring Arenas of Protest Activism and Art.

A powerful indictment on the failures of governments, capitalist globalisation and our own roles in resistance and passivity.

It asks, how do we build new forms of political alliances and solidarities and how do we make this international?

Performed and exhibited at:
Contact Theatre Manchester England 2004
Birmingham Rep Theatre England 2004

T.I.1 – Performance Slides and Sound

Who controls the changes and forces determining our identities and does the current discourse favour our futures

Are we more alienated than ever from ourselves and from each other?
Will the New American Century project continue to define the World?
Who killed Blackness and what does it mean to be Asian?
How many are detained? Killed in custody?

An improvised performance by Poulomi questioning perceptions of political and cultural identity.

Who is considered the new threat of ‘The Terrorist’ and can this be subverted?

T.I.2 LED screens and recycled oak

A dynamic statement upon the recent years of international protests against war.

It highlights the passion, humour and politics of individuals and movements who create their own commentary through banners, placards, chants and slogan.

Viewers are encouraged to write their own slogans and statements in chalk on the hoarding.

T.I.3 Projections

A poignant memory journey through the often erased political history of Asians in this country to presnt day, encompassing a range of communities who have struggled and protested and continue to do so, against racism, deportation, domestic violence and state sanctioned violence.

T.I.4 Sound pieces
(the art of scat)

Mad Dogs and Englishmen meet Poetic Terrorism in the Toilets