Rosa Johan Uddoh 2019

The Master's Tools Will Not Dismantle The Master's House, Babe.

Performed at Tate Britain, London, as part of Art in The Age of Black Girl Magic, November 2018, commissioned by Bee Tajudeen.

Lyrics

I'm Tate, these are the Lylettes and we're here to lend you some sugar! 

I've got a question for your ex and mine,

And by ex I mean your local institution:

Your museum, your art gallery, your school, your kids' school, your boss, my boss, the BBC, the UK, the EU, catwalk shows, sportswear brands, the T-A-T-E and the T-U-R-N-E-R-P-R-I-Z-E. 

Why do you keep coming round, playing with my heart?

Why don't you get out of my house and let me make a brand new start? 

Let me get over you, the way you got over me! 

OK for the next part, we're gonna need some guidance from the Lord. 

And by the Lord.... I do mean Audre Lorde. 

You see; the master's tools - they will not dismantle the master's house. 

You can try to use them

But they will not bring about that deep, lasting change. 

Face your institution! 

You say you wanna be just friends,

But how can we still be friends when collaborating only breaks my heart again?

There must be something I can do about it!

Set me free why don't you babe!

Get out my life why don't you babe! 

Cause you don't really love me

You just keep me hanging on. 

Financially dependant on you, but my heart and soul have got to be free. 

And, to be honest, I've been really inspired by that Sonia Boyce documentary:

'Who has ever heard of a black artist?'

(BBC Four - check it out)

I've got to make like Lubaina, 

And set myself free!

Get myself my own big building, reject complicity!

Get on, get out and archive your lives, for the library!