Tuesday, May 31, 2011

My 10 Year Performance Art Itch

I'm very glad the forecast looks promising for this weekend, because I plan to do my first performance art piece this next First Friday!

street performer ,new orleans
New Orleans street performer via Flickr

Performance art is an idea that has intrigued & tantalized me for 10 years, ever since I went to New Orleans. I was 19 years old and had never seen street performers like I saw there! Their were so many of them, and the ones that struck me the most were the men and women who were using their bodies as living statues, all of them painted or dressed in fanciful ways.

New Orleans performance artist via OutdoorPhotography.com

Later, my desire to take part in an experience that would transform others was stirred by reading Cunt by Inga Muscio (this was when I was living in Seattle). One story in particular she told was about a woman (whose name I forget) who Inga went to see that was some kind of guru, rather than artist (but I tend to think of them in the same way). This woman did nothing more than embrace each person who came to her in turn, loving and accepting them fully. Inga described this woman as smelling intensely of roses, and noted that she, too, smelled of roses for days after the encounter. Not only did this encounter change Inga, but reading about it changed me too, and gave me yet another part of my vision: to create a feeling of being utterly loved.

Betsey Barratt & unknown male via Drew Orrin Brown

After I'd moved back home to Kansas City, I saw another performance artist, dressed as a fairy in the Crossroads Art District a few times, and Betsy Barratt's intriguing costumes at local events. Each time this part of my mind was tickled.

Annie Sprinkle exhibiting her cervix via kusama pyjamas

After thinking about it for a while, and not seeing how I could do something like that, I let it fade to the background of my mind until I went and saw Annie Sprinkle last month, and heard her incredible stories of performance that included spiritual, ecological and sexual themes. Now the tickle had become an itch and I knew I was getting close to realizing a 10-year-old wish! If only I could come up with some idea of WHAT TO DO!!!

The answer came to me through a series of visions in meditation and I finally *knew* I was ready earlier this month. I asked myself, "What is THE MOST inspiring, audacious, original, transformative experience I can create for people?"

When the answer finally came to me, it seemed so obvious! Can you believe it took me this long to think of it?

Tune in Thursday for a sneak preview of what I'll be doing and where to find me!

Related posts:
8 Questions about Art and America
Recommended Stops for Your First Friday
Cut & Paste: My Exhibit of Collages

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2 comments:

Darcy said...

Yay! I can't wait for the sneaky peek and hope I can swing by to witness it on Friday!

May said...

Me too! <3