- Lorna Irvine
- 31 May 2019
Nima Sene tackles racism in uneven but pointed and funny show
Alluding to more than fifty shades of beige, Nima Sene's Beige B*tch is a fully-formed character with a score to settle. Tired of the wearisome ubiquity of identity politics, this queer black icon crushes clichés under their killer heels.
Armed with Oprah-like tactics (free drinks, loving platitudes, an endorsement from Solange) Sene is a superb performer with great comic instincts, even if the show struggles to sustain its fierce energy throughout.
Daniel Hughes' films accompanying the performance are reminiscent of Cindy Sherman at her most grotesque, and augment the bad taste factor. From Orientalism to pasty white flesh selling perfume; 'Southern Mammy' figures to jabs at a woman called Sarah wearing 'fashionable' hijabs, no racial stereotypes are left unmolested.
Only Sene's beautiful, visceral poetry hints at their true self, with their mouth projected via video onto their body whilst working a gold treadmill. They rail in rhyme against being othered, and it's both truly chilling and moving.
As with all the best pop culture-infused art, painful home truths are delivered with a smile, strut and sashay, and a knowing sense of the ridiculousness of disposable, shrill fashion and celebrity.
Reviewed at Take Me Somewhere, CCA, Glasgow.