Institutional Bodies

This piece I designed for collaboration with Misael Soto for his MFA show "Side Show" at SAIC in Chicago on May 11, 2018.

Using a sewn together lycra fabric as a means of dialogue, Misael and I wore the fabric as we engaged in three different dialogue's through physical conversation. The piece was viewed from the 13th floor of the school building and was performed in the courtyard of the SAIC museum. No permission was asked. The following topics were discussed: 

Love
Arguing
Play

The subjects were moved into and out of over a period of 25 minutes. On the 13th floor a tape player played a recording of verbal conversations that could accompany the physical enactments of the dialogues being acted out below. However the audio and the visual performance were intentionally out of sync. This was to open the discussion to how perception of a situation from afar may not be what an outsider viewer may perceive it to be.

 Interestingly, as we were performing a protest was going on. I admit that I don't know what the protest was about, but this did change the piece's intention as we were doing it. It started to become a protest in of itself, engaged with issues of the capital nature of the educational institution of SAIC.

Interestingly, as we were performing a protest was going on. I admit that I don't know what the protest was about, but this did change the piece's intention as we were doing it. It started to become a protest in of itself, engaged with issues of the capital nature of the educational institution of SAIC.

 Here we are discussing Love.

Here we are discussing Love.

 This is the audio equipment used to play the tape of our discussions about Love, Anger and Play.

This is the audio equipment used to play the tape of our discussions about Love, Anger and Play.

 Here we are engaged in our Play conversation. This security guard at the top of the steps is telling us to stop. We explained to her that it was a part of a show associated with the Performance Art program at the school. She replied that she had her orders. How can a program that focuses on ephemera and topics of spontaneity exist in an institutional setting? Issues of liability of course are reasons, but we were not behaving in a dangerous manner.

Here we are engaged in our Play conversation. This security guard at the top of the steps is telling us to stop. We explained to her that it was a part of a show associated with the Performance Art program at the school. She replied that she had her orders. How can a program that focuses on ephemera and topics of spontaneity exist in an institutional setting? Issues of liability of course are reasons, but we were not behaving in a dangerous manner.

In this video we are exploring Anger, but as we were doing this, with the protest going on, the anger turned into play and a desire to mold into, be part of our surroundings. In this case it became the corner of the SAIC Art Museum.

How does perception from other's affect the reality of those actually engaged in a situation? Because of the open score nature of the dialogue, the piece was able to shift based on the environment and the entrance and exit into the different theme's of Love, Anger and Play.

The fact that the piece ended with a showdown between us and a security guard gave the piece a broader meaning. While it was still about perception, it also became about the institution in which we are all trying to exist. How we behave is influenced by the system that we are apart of. This in turn affects the nature of any conversation. In this case, it shifted our dialogue of play into a walk back to the building where we that dealt with anger toward the capitalist institution of education, our litigation culture and the harsh reality that subtle and spontaneous interventions can be thwarted by such a climate. People of the world are filled with fear because of hateful acts. Whenever something seems "strange" and is unknown it instantly becomes a threat.