Performa Presents

Ryan Gander

Earnest Hawker

Various times and locations

Earnest Hawker will be part of Art Basel Miami Beach's Public, an art program during the fair's run organized in conjunction with the Bass Museum of Art! Learn more about Public here


Ryan Gander’s Earnest Hawker takes place across the twenty-two days of Performa 15, where an actor assumes the persona of the artist’s imagined future self, making his appearance as he mingles at the biennial’s key nightly openings and events.

Channeling the Wildean pun of “the earnest Ernest”, Gander’s Hawker is a dandy hobo whose name suggests the cheerful antagonism of his character: he attends these events for all the right and wrong reasons (and perhaps partly just for the promise of free drinks). Engaging the audience in scripted conversations of Gander’s future dreams and failed pasts, Hawker eventually pushes a sale on his unsuspecting mark: a sculpture that fits into the narrative of their prior discussion. Earnest Hawker is both confidante and irritant, inhabiting multiple personalities—a drunken London bon-vivant, a failed New York artist, a disgraced Wall Street broker—and countless iterations of Gander’s fancied and conflicted selves.

Curated by Mark Beasley.

Image credit: Ryan Gander, Earnest Hawker, 2015. A Performa Commission. Photo by Paula Court.


More about this artist