A white older queer working-class transdisciplinary artist, I self-compassionately traverse trauma, trickily treading between humour and horror to upturn the duality of the banal and the tragic.

Grief informs my autoethnographic artwork. Raised in kinship care and warped by societal attitudes surrounding the AIDS crisis as a queer teen, I am in recovery from a nonadulthood of addictions and abuses. I seek nuanced exchange about awkward humanity.

 

take me with your AIDS gun

pierce me and deflate me

A LOVE DIVINE

Part of the queer trauma comedy SHAMES: looking never hurt, this popartfilm was commissioned for Supernormal festival 2022 by QUEEF Experimental and is part of the British Music Collection thanks to the support of the LGBTQ+ Music Study Group with Sound and Music. 


https://britishmusiccollection.org.uk/article/lgbtq-composers-open-call-leon-clowes

 
you were not to blame_edited.png
 

I didn’t know that that was what people did

SECRETS: The Last Five Days of Sandra

Produced by Britten Pears Arts at a Snape residency, supported by PRS Foundation. The SECRETS performance installation was a collaboration with Andrea Edwards, Kelly O'Brien and Gerry McNee (Itchy Ear).

 
Leon Clowes, June 2022, portrait by Ilmė Vyšniauskaitė.jpg

Selected residencies, commissions, projects, and performances

2022


Margate Pride x Crate 14-30 Dec SECRETS+SHAMES=SELFS residency

Cafe Oto 7 Dec The Haunting @ Naviar Records night

Exploding Cinema 19 Nov SHAMES: looking never hurt London film premiere

Frieze Art Fair 16 Oct The Last Five Days of Sandra @ Abbas Zahedi’s Open Call

Tethered Publics 7 Oct New Cross in Digitally Specific exhibition app

Emergency 22 @ Contact, Manchester 1 Oct Peter x 30

Woodbridge Ambient Music Festival 24 Sep The Haunting

Supernormal Festival 14 Aug SHAMES: looking never hurt @ QUEEF Qult

Wandsworth Arts Fringe 11-25 Aug Nan Kids workshops

NI Mental Health Arts Fest 9-16 May Days of Future Past

Live Arts Club 1 May The Last Five Days of Sandra @ VSSL Studio, Deptford

Incite 20 Apr The Last Five Days of Sandra

SET Lewisham Gallery 11-13 Mar Recovery: Shadows and Light exhibition

Snape Maltings 7-12 Feb SECRETS residency produced by Britten Pears Arts

Grove Park Library 28 Jan The Mayor’s Borough of Culture 2022 artist-in-residence


2020-21 highlights

Disability Arts Online Covid Commission – Nan Kids at SPILL International Festival of Performance and Deptford X – The Avant Garden Drop-In Centre at Round Chapel, HackneyCCA Glasgow’s Radiophrenia FestivalKaamos (Finland) / Datscha (Berlin) Radio – Days of Future Past in Transmission Gallery / Queer Contemporaries / Queer Art Projects / Squish.Rotterdam

 

Photographs of leon above, and Nan Kids Alicia, leon and Adéle below, by Ilmé Vyšniauskaité https://www.instagram.com/ilmevysnia/

Nan Kids - Alicia, Leon, Adèle - lags an
 

Buy the download EP

SHAMES: looking never hurt

three teenage trauma tracks written in the time of the AIDS crisis

 

secrets keep us SICK