Johannesburg-based painter and filmmaker Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi presents a multi-site video and multimedia artwork titled Equations for a Body at Rest, which tracks the history and symbolic presentation of the Commonwealth Games (and, by association, the Commonwealth body itself) from its genesis in empire to the current day. Has the changing public face of the Games corresponded to equivalent changes at an anatomical level? What are the implications for all those participating in the Games today?

Equations for a Body at Rest has two components, ‘The Same Track’ and ‘The Name Game’, each working in concert with the other. Together they form a public work in video, print and online. Spread across the city, within community groups and on large screens, posters and billboards, Nkosi’s works speak to the institutional exploitations and desires of a white Commonwealth geo-political-industrial complex.

‘The Same Track’ is a new video work playing on screens around the city, using archival footage of Commonwealth Games athletes, spectators, and administrators, cut together with promotional and other film materials. Through symbolic juxtapositions of scenes from different eras, the work – using tropes of public messaging – highlights both transformation and stasis through time. Alternately playful and shocking, ‘The Same Track’ works with the idea that the Games, including in its current iteration, is implicated in an ongoing political project centuries in the making.

The Same Track: Festival Live Sites

(in rotation daily throughout the Games)



Thursday 28 - Friday 29 July Farnborough Fields, Castle Vale, B35 7LQ
Friday 29 - Saturday 30 July Sense Touchbase Pears, Selly Oak, B29 6NA
Saturday 30 - Sunday 31 July Sparkhill Park, B11 4LX
Saturday 30 July - Monday 8 August Smithfield Festival Site, B5 6UB
Monday 1 - Tuesday 2 August Edgbaston Reservoir, B16 9EE
Wednesday 3 - Thursday 4 August Oaklands Recreation Ground, Yardley, B25 8UB
Friday 5 August Eastside Projects, Digbeth First
Friday 5 - Saturday 6 August Handsworth Park, B20 2BY
Sunday 7 - Monday 8 August Ward End Park, B8 3PH

The Same Track: Community Screening Micro-Festival

In collaboration with Bertz Associates.

Featuring Tower of Dreams by Pogus Caesar and Sporting Tower by Yonatan Tiruneh.

Venue list TBC

Generously supported by the Canada Council for the Arts, High Commission of Canada in the United Kingdom, Arts Council England and The National Lottery Heritage Fund.