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Quilla Constance_aka_Jennifer Allen


17 February – 13 March 2016


The Vaults Gallery is delighted to present '#QC', an Arts Council England funded solo exhibition of new and existing videos, paintings, photographs, costumes and live performance works  by interdisciplinary artist Jennifer Allen aka Quilla Constance ‘QC’. 


Quilla Constance ‘QC’ is an ‘exotic’ militant punk persona created and deployed by Allen to interrogate category driven capitalist networks and locate points of agency within systems of power.  As QC, Allen stages and virally inserts her artistic practice within pop culture, traversing music venues, forging protests and entering art galleries in order to emulate and critique the operations of these cultural zones. Here QC offers a raw and fresh frame through which Allen examines the negotiation of black female identities within contemporary British majority culture and high art.


On February 17th Allen will showcase her newly commissioned video work ‘#QC_001’, an overt tribal cakewalk set in a leafy Bedfordshire woodland. The video sees Allen channel a guttural, sub-linguistic vocal performance (as QC) - invoking a spirit of conviction reminiscent of the 'holy fool'. Other scenes are interrupted by fractured sequences of erotic media images, interspersed with commercial branding signifiers and pitched alongside vignettes of QC metal guitar, percussive samba, cello, banjo and mandola.


Other videos include 'Happy Christmas Mom & Dad' (2006) - a transgressive work which sees Allen allegedly perform a seductive dance as a gift for her parents on Christmas day.


The exhibition continues with a series of bespoke ‘exotic’ costume-adorned paintings, QC selfies,  live atonal cello and raw sub linguistic vocal performances, transforming The Vaults Gallery into a space where notions of cultural authenticity and taboo are challenged via a series of unexpected visual and aural combinations. 


#QC sees Allen's interdisciplinary works conspire to invite the viewer into dialogues through which notions of cultural authenticity and the production of meaning are visibly contested.


QC’s previous exhibitions, screenings and performative lectures have taken place at venues such as: The Freud Museum, The Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Royal Academy of Arts, Toynbee Studios (Artsadmin), Modern Art Oxford, 176 London (Zabludowicz Collection) and 198 Contemporary Arts and Learning (Funded by Arts Council England, TrAIN, UAL, Diversity Art Forum, Lambeth Council and South London Art Map)


Allen’s works are represented in the collections of Anita Zabludowicz, David Roberts and Goldsmith’s College Wardens.


#QC opens at The Vaults Gallery 17 February - 13 March 2016 and tours to The Kendrew Barn, St John's College, Oxford, 23 March - 16 April 2016. 

10 March 2016


Toynbee Studios, Arts Bar & Cafe

7 - 9.45PM


The symposium will promote dialogues in examination of works from Allen’s #QC exhibition in conjunction with discourses of over-identification, dis-identification and the post-human.


This event, chaired by Manick Govinda, will include presentations, a panel discussion and an audience Q+A. 


Speakers: Pil and Galia Kollectiv, Rachel Garfield, Alexandra Kokoli, Kirsten Cooke, Jennifer Allen aka Quilla Constance. 


Entry to #QC_symposium is FREE and open to the public.


*Watch this space (from December 2015) for further information and ticket links*

17 February 2016

#QC Exhibition Opening

VAULT Festival

The Vaults Gallery

6 - 9PM



17 February 2016

Quilla Constance live performance

VAULT Festival

The Vaults Gallery




5 March 2016

Quilla Constance live performance

VAULT Festival

The Vaults Gallery









Banner image: Quilla Constance Performance Painting (2015). Photo by Simon Richardson.

Events image: Quilla Constance Live Performance (2011). Photo by Andrew Crowe. 

Tuesday - Sunday

11am - 7pm


is via Leake Street, SE1 7NN

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