And Say the Animal Responded? review – artists make a fierce point

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FACT, Liverpool
A reanimated rhino mixes with DJs and dancers in a captivating show that explores our fragile connection to other species

In the exhibition And Say the Animal Responded? science-y artists and arty scientists ponder interspecies communication. Their co-stars include some of the world’s great brains and hive minds: wolves, cetaceans, apes, pachyderms, colonies of ants and choruses of birds.

The largest family of works is Amalia Pica and Rafael Ortega’s exploration into communication styles of the hominidae: homo sapiens (or more accurately, homo technicus) and their great ape kin. The public spaces of FACT in Liverpool echo with the recorded din of human primatologists mimicking calls of their hominid subjects. In a video, a dancer performs choreography running through the Catalogue of Great Ape Gestures (in Alphabetical Order), his movements now recognisably human, now not. Often they enter a gestural language that is taboo to human adults: extravagant physical displays, sexual, playful or irate.

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And Say The Animal Responded? is at FACT, Liverpool, until 13 December.

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