Transnaturism at Nada Art Fair

Transnaturism 1.4

Performance and sculptural installation of the progressive narrative of Transnaturism by Jenna Balfe.

Featuring performers: Nicole Salcedo, Baker, Pebble Yaffee, Baker Stephaine, Misael Soto and Daniel Edenberg
Music: Dennis Fuller, David Bennet and Miles Hancock
Poetry by: Monica Uszerswicz

Transnaturism is a play on the Transhumanist movement. Transhumanism theorizes that human beings will evolve beyond our current capacity through the physical adaptation of technologies into the body. Transnaturism theorizes that human evolution will excel to greater heights through an opposite process of moving toward symbiotic and healing relationship with organic life/nature. 

This performance was supported by Oolite Arts, BFI , Nada Art Fair and Mana Contemporary.


Transnaturism Script and Narrative:

Character Descriptions:

Jenna- Thrown from a period of time in the early 1900’s She was tuned in to the painful harmonics of the Earth and Human conversations which led her to seek refuge.

Nikki- Also thrown from the early 1900’s Nikki was deeply invested in the magic of plants and earth love. She also had become aware of the pending doom in store for She identifies as being a leaf.

Dan- He represents the patriarchical greedfull raping and fucking of the Earth. He is responsible for the human extinction. He has an empathy that he supresses.

Baker- A native of Shadow Earth, Baker has an innocence to her. As the refelxions of Earth settle into her, the option of choice creates the moment where innocence is lost.

Pebble- Is a native of the Shadow planet- She is aware of her body and self in an abstracted way. As though she was built and intended by someone else. She grapples with feeling abandoned by what she eventually perceives to be humanity.

Monica- Is from neither world. She exists on the proscenium of the experience, speaking neither to truth not to ignorance in particular.

Misael- Is also from an inbetween world. They represent success and judgement. They are also  an afterthought to the destruction of womanman. They are like the undertaker.

Dennis- Is the ryhtym of the experience. He functions to move the event forward, despite the ongoings.

Myles- A mischevious elf.

Synopsis: The story has a timeless ambiguity about it. The Jenna and Nikki have been ejected from Earth during the human extinction- but it is not clear when that occured. Giving the time aspect of the story a cyclic reality. Dan- the destroyer, represents the misuse of life- was ejected from Earth onto Shadow Earth. Shadow Earth is another planet, but also a reflexion of Earth. It exists in a timeless state that is open to the possibilty of choice and linear time, but this junction has not yet been reached.

Mood: Dark as it may sound, I see true progress being the immaterialization of human kind. The kindness of this rests is the beauty of the perceived universe. Darkness and Death become sweet sentiments of real progress.


The Log- 9ft log on wheels with two 6 ft sails on top. The sails will have holes for hands, feet objects to peer out.

The Vine/Cable Rack - A rack made out of branches where live vines, fake vines and cables will be hung. It also will have hooks on the branches.

The Sisyphean Dollies from The Good Lords Hell - Two  poorly made dollies that are piled up with technologies of all types, plant matter, paper, ornaments- that will be utilized in the procession.

Music: A pre-made track and live marching drums at the end.

Section 1

The Music Starts

Emerging from  the life pod Jenna and Nikki had transmuted belief into a mixture of awkward  “modern” technology and the grace of life. Forgiving and astounded at once. They have been thrown from the planet Earth, which recently had expelled human life, finding themselves between Earth and Earth’s Shadow World. The Shadow world is new, innocent. They are wearing their Breathing Suits- which are what kept them alive as Earth progressed towards human extinction.

Stumbling to re- find form, they are both tragic and humourous at the same time. They enter into the dance of the ancient code of the chameleon.

Their dance is curious, yet filled with a sense of incompleteness, they are left out, they are other. Their strangeness brings them together, as often occurs with humans- creating a duet. (duet music)

Section 2 ( Starts when Jenna and Nikki reach duet- happens simultaneously)

The first flower ever bloomed on Shadow Earth. Baker, a native Shadow inhabitant emerges from the flower, at first it is a beautiful event, but as with any new begining the confusion creates nervous energy and the cyclic death pattern that had landed them back between times is remembered/reflected and the first flower in stomped.

Because they are between worldings, the obsolete bone deforming falsity mingled with the breath of the leaves. The Natives evaluate their presence.

Section 3 ( Occuring simultaneously with Native landing) (Words are spoken- Monica reads her poem- which Nikki and Jenna dance in response to.)

Meanwhile, Nikki and Jenna are thrown apart, they remember anger, individualistic disconnection.  Their minds breach contact within themselves. The pain of solipsist aggregation ensues, they seperate from their embrace. The Natives in their innocence offer help. Nikki and Jenna are helped out of their Breathing Suits. They put them onto the rack. The dance of lost Connection begins. (Third Dance)

Section 4 ( Is happening during the reading of the poem)

Dan enters the patio area. He walks in with heavy purpose. He is the man, responsible for  the ejection of human kind. The morning of this other world was upon him. In a suit he sits in a chair shifting with the pain of seconds.

The plan has been seen through and he struggles with a sense of accomplishment and the unavoidable tear that has occurred from the destruction of self, other and planet.

Perceived self was set to be fine… but as actual self was relentlessly fucked raped and used, with total disregard for sanity, air quality, plants or feelings…

The internal tear was too deep, and so he too was castigated to the space between worldlings. Part old world, part new orientation- Shadow Earth.

Heavy with the replete fucking of the Earth, he slides off the chair. As he slides off the chair to the ground- He becomes noticed by the two original inhabitants of the Shadow world. (Baker and Pebbs) As they are from this world that is new to the earthling cast aways.

They attend to the duty of acquainting him with the ground. With innocence, they discover remnanats of his planet, that strangely is also their planet and re-appropriate them into clothing technology. (from the inside of his suitcase)

Section 6 ( Which happens while the Natives are adorning themselves)

Jenna and Nikki see the sympathy and become confused. They begin to make some calculations (the computer dance)

Section 7

Jenna and Nikki reach a conclusion. They make their way over to the Native beings.

Through a gestural dance that involves touch and friendship they agree to wrap Dan with the vines and carry him over head and place him inside the Log prop.

Pebble and Baker go inside the prop with Dan. This time they are inside represents choice. Here the patriarchial destroyer in trapped with innocence. Will the darkness of his empathy allow him to join? Body parts portrude from the holes in the sails- items are tossed out.

Section 8 ( Occurs during log occupation)

Misael in Gender neutral dress comes out. They offer Nikki and Jenna a drink and paints something on their faces. They enter into precise angualr movements and engage in the Battle of The Log. Misael stands and watches- eventually whipping out a tape measure arbitrarily measuring the inches of difference in distance on either side. Eventually- without any seeming reason they stop and also enter the log. Hands come out of the fabric adorning Misael with something. He alone begins to push the log. Singing begins.

Section 9

Dan, Pebble , Nikki and Jenna exit the log. Dennis enters with the marching tom. Every one gets in a line infront of eachother and has a duet to the beat of the drum. The feeling of being seen by someone who can see you, widens the soul and connects us to ourselves, eachother and planet. Though it may be painful, as some people are more reflective than others, it is important that we try. This moment is apex of emotionality for the piece. Meditation, love and honesty are the motivations.

Section 10

The awkward dolly cart is wheeled out by Myles who also wears the marching bass drum.

The procession begins.

The procession is meant to be humourous, dystopic, medieval, sexy, fun and punk. Not Bread and Puppet vibe… a bit more dark. But also open to people- not meant to exclude outside participation. It is an existential moment to be sure, parading through the “Art Fair” of material items, in times of capitalistic heart destruction. How do we assemble our meanings?

It would be so great if each of you could add what the procession could potentially resolve for you below. Just put your name next to your blub.

Jenna- For me, the procession will resolve a desire I have had ever since the first Basel came to my town. My original idea was to shove firecrackers in my ass and roll through the fair on roller skates as a form of protest. Now that I am older and wiser…. I still want to do this. No- but seriously, now it is about me being present within such a system, with objects that are all recyled and re-usable, presenting a concept that is anti, but with some heart. Cuz, in the end we all will be dead.