AUSTIN, Texas — People braved the cold on Saturday to view performance art at a local swimming pool.

  • Performance art by Eto Otitigbe
  • Capoeira dancers performed
  • Supplements Carver’s gallery exhibit

The George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center hosted the performance by interdisciplinary artist Eto Otitigbe. The performance supplemented Otitigbe’s exhibition, SUBVERSE Un/seen at the Carver Museum’s gallery.

The event took place at the pool behind the museum. It was once a neighborhood pool, but it has been in disuse for about a decade.

“We need to activate spaces that have been in disuse, particularly when there are so many communities that have been displaced,” said Carre Adams, Carver Museum’s exhibit coordinator. “Part of what we have to do is preserve black culture and history and aesthetic expression.”

On Saturday the pool, which did not have water in it, served as a dance floor for local capoeira performers. Capoeira is an Afro-Brazilian art form that combines elements of dance, acrobatics, and martial arts. African slaves in Brazil developed the art form in the beginning of the 16th century.

Otitigbe provided a rhythmic live mix for the dancers to move to. The artist had painted blue patterns on the floor of the pool. The dancers dialogued with Otitigbe’s work through their movements.  Otitigbe held the performance in a pool because the worlds above and below water present a dichotomy of experience.

SUBVERSE Un/seen is on view at the Carver Museum through February 28.