Martin O Brien
Talks & Seminars

Martin O'Brien - Online Talk

Wel­come to the Last Breath Soci­ety: Mor­tal­i­ty, Care and Sol­i­dar­i­ty in Zom­bie Time — online talk by Mar­tin O’Brien

£3 for non-members; free for CAMP members
Thursday 14 January 2021, 6.30pm-8.15pm on Zoom.
Booking essential, tickets £3 (free for CAMP members).
Click on website link to book.

For this online Zoom talk, Martin will talk about his practice and research in relation to ideas of care,
community, and solidarity in times of illness. He will discuss his notion of Zombie Time, or the temporal experience of living on longer than expected, as a way of understanding mortality and chronic illness. Martin’s current project The Last Breath Society (Coughing Coffin) will be performed at the ICA (London) in 2021 and explores communities of illness in a time when our wider relationship with mortality has changed. He will talk about this project and ways of imagining a solidarity when we cannot be together. Welcome to the Last Breath Society, a place where we can decay together.

Martin O’Brien is an artist, theorist, teacher, and zombie. His performance, writing and video art uses physical endurance, long durations, and pain-based practices in order to examine what it means to be born with a life shortening disease, politically and philosophically. Martin has cystic fibrosis and all of his work and writing draws upon this experience. His work explores sickness, death and survival. He is best known for his long durational solo performances, and his collaborations with the pioneering body artist, Sheree Rose.

His work has been written about in books and articles, including the major book about his work ‘Survival of the Sickest: The Art of Martin O’Brien’. He has performed throughout the UK, Europe, US, and Canada. Venues have included: Tate Britain (London), Spill Festival (London), Kapelica Gallery (Ljubljana), ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives (LA), Grace Exhibition Space (New York), Montreal Arts Interculturels (Montreal), DaDaFest (Liverpool), Wellcome Collection (London). His work has been commissioned and funded by organisations such as Live Art Development Agency, Arts Council England, British Council, Arts Catalyst.

He is currently lecturer Performance at Queen Mary University of London. His work has been featured on BBC radio and Sky television. He recently surpassed his life expectancy and is enjoying life as a zombie.
Martin O Brien
Performance Research