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Moi Tran

The sleeping body is an iconic state of everyday intimacy, vulnerability and natural power

A photo of some false teeth in a plastic tupperware, with the words SLEEP in purple repeated many times over the top

S L E E P  is a collective experience taking place over one night in Toynbee Studios, our home in east London.

Guests will be invited to arrive at 6pm on Saturday 6 July, enjoy a communal dinner, and participate in a guided exploration of the theme of this iteration of S L E E P. For S L E E P at Toynbee Studios, Moi Tran looks to poetry as an instrument of hope. She invites contemplation on themes of protest and hope through the reading of ‘Midnight and Other Poems’ (It’s Also Fine) by Mourid Barghouti and ‘Pessimism is for Lightweights’ (Courage is a Muscle) by Salena Godden. These texts will be considered in light of the recent student protests against the genocide in Gaza, demands for divestment and ceasefire in Palestine, and the reactions of the Palestinian people to hearing about these protests.  

After these readings, performances and opportunities for sharing, guests will set up a temporary communal sleeping environment within the building, where they’ll spend the night. At 9am on Sunday 7 July, participants will start the day together with a shared breakfast to reflect on the experience.

How to take part

If you are interested in participating, click on the ‘booking’ button to the right. You will need to submit your name and email address, and you will be entered into a ballot from which a maximum of 50 names will be randomly selected. We will be accepting submissions until 12pm midday, 10 June, and you will be notified if you’ve been selected or not selected on 17 June. In this form, you also have the opportunity to book on behalf of someone else, and to book for yourself and an access assistant.

If you are selected to participate in S L E E P, you will be asked to fill out an additional form to tell us a little bit about yourself before the event.

About S L E E P

This will be the fourth iteration of S L E E P, an experience conceived and created by Moi Tran.

S L E E P invites transient encounters in the forming of collective experience and thinking within this domain of intimacy. 

S L E E P positions the sleeping body to reframe collective gathering in a public space, wherever this body / these bodies appear as inclinations of rest. 

This is a recurring piece of participatory real time experience that invites a group exploration of ‘collective sleep’ as a space to contemplate the act of sleep as a conscious reclamation of public space.  

Each public enactment of S L E E P is presented within a theme of thought, that tends towards discourse on immediate events or a theme that is part of the artist’s ongoing research.  

Moi Tran employs research, theatre, text, sound, installation, video, and performance to examine theorisations on the politics of emotional reckoning and states of feeling, encounters of witnessing in events of fugitive performativity and the politics of sound as critical record. Her interests in alternative modes of communication have produced experiments for imagining and performing counternarratives inside and outside archives of information. She collaborates with sound makers, dancers, actors and community-performers to reimagine conventional performance making. 

Photo by Yiannis Katsaris

Tran is currently commissioned by the Wellcome Collection, Performing Borders/Performance Possession Automaton. She has presented and performed her work nationally and internationally. She will contribute to ‘By the Means at Hand’ a project by Vlatka Horvat for the Croatian Pavilion at the Venice Biennale – the 60th International Exhibition of Visual Art 2024 – by invitation.

Recent exhibitions/ events include:

‘Well Settled’ (LUX U.K & OutPost VN); ‘SLEEP’(Live Art Development Agency/Royal Court /Pushkin House); ‘Civic Sound Archive’ Solo show PEER (UK); ‘Reshaping the collectible’ Tate Modern (UK); Sign Chorus (Da Nang, Vietnam); ‘Sonic Signalling in Reverse’ (Gothenburg Biennale)’; ‘The Bolero Effect’ (VCCA Vietnam); ‘The Circuit’ (Prague Quadrennial Festival); ‘I love a broad margin to my life’ Solo show (Yeo Workshop, Singapore); Shy God Chapter Mot (Chisenhale)‘Shy God – A Chorus’ (SPILL Festival UK); Landing 1.2.3 (Mark Rothko Centre Latvia) 


Design for performance:

  • There are wheelchair accessible toilets at Toynbee Studios. Read more about Accessibility at Toynbee Studios
  • All toilets at Toynbee Studios are gender neutral
  • A relaxed performance kit with yoga mats, blankets, cushions and ear defenders is available
  • BSL interpretation is available on request. Email or call 020 7247 5102 to arrange this, and please allow at least a week’s notice
  • Please let us know if you have any additional access requirements, but please bear in mind that the sleeping arrangements will be very basic. Sleepers need to be able to be able to safely sleep in such makeshift conditions.  

Date and time

6–7 July 2024


Apply to participate


Toynbee Studios
28 Commercial Street
London, E1 6AB
Tel: 020 7247 5102
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