Forgive the abstraction. It’s a sad attempt at a joke about art.
Here’s short clip of me showing you unskilled art things (ft. Grimes}
I’m going to do other things with this stuff, I hope, like scanning the crumply watercolor prints to use as textures in photoshop, where I might add the angry text swimming in the deep-end of my exploding brain...because I don’t know what to do with it all (the violent language, the diseased brain, etc). Of course, the angry text comes from an angry space I’m trying to fill with divine truth, whatever that may or may not mean to you / me / us. For now, I need to dispose of the anger somehow, and somewhere, so it doesn’t haunt me (or at least minimizes the effects of said haunting). It’s very real.
Now, here’s 2 snippets from a longer (6 minute) video piece which re-appropriates some of the angry-man language that restructured my brain for however long I was made to believe it was normal. Is it? It doesn’t have to be. I’m in the process of healing and unlearning.
The piece references a deeply personal set of experiences with misogyny (not sure if I’d even call it a “set of experiences,” it was more like one, big, gigantic, traumatic mindfuck) and so much else.
I initially wanted to show or install these A/V projects in-person, at some venues around here, in October...but now I kind of want to present them to the anonymous internet instead. Not sure yet. Maybe there’s no limitation. I have some new poems coming out soon, for the internet, as well.
I’m tired of being “in-person.” Few friends remain after a series of cataclysmic (yet informative) events took place in my life. In the wake of all that, though, new, post-cataclysm people and experiences are entering, and pre-cataclysm people are returning.
In any case, I prefer being almost completely alone.
Finally, here’s an image about shedding layers (AKA Holiday’s hair)…
I am incubating new projects (specifically, a series of A/V experiments, with accompanying text, that I will be showing here in the Bay over the next few months).
In the meantime, here is an excerpt I uncovered from my graduate school thesis. I thought it was garbage at the time and told myself I’d never look back on it again. Lately, I’m trying to break my lifelong pattern of hyperproduction and subsequent self-hatred, build new neuropathways, love myself at every step of the way, etc. Or something.
Today, at least.
CAPITAL EFFICIENT MODELS
Pick up a copy this Weekend at the SF Art Book Fair! July 19-21.
+++ Come by for the Issue 5 release party on August 9th @ 2727 California Street.
I wrote about Alvaro Mutis’ The Adventures of Maqroll, Existentialism, the colonial gaze, non-magical-realist South American writing, death, Baudrillard, and Fitz Carralto.
Saturday, 6/15 @ 3:30 PM
I’m reading with sweethearts
1122 12th in Oak
Thanks to Zack Haber for putting this together :)
Excited to share space with Karina Gill, Yvonne Li, and Emily Pinkerton at Amy’s in San Francisco!
Dm for address :)
I was deeply grateful to present words at the JCC East Bay’s Passover Sedar on 4/19. As a non-Jew, this opportunity allowed me to delve into the story of Passover with beginner’s eyes, write through the experience of Exodus for the first time, and interpret new, expansive possibilities of liberation.
Since I do not intend to appropriate the struggle of slavery, Exodus, and diaspora, as this is not a part of my ancestral history, I decided instead to experiment with a form that I often associate with Jewish texts and traditions: the existential approach, and dialectical practice, of resolving a challenge through questioning.
The practice of asking questions is so central to the Sedar - everyone can enter through this accessible frame for the first or 60th time, just as during Passover, everyone is invited to enter the home to celebrate this night which is different than all other nights. By framing the story of Passover through the four questions, those who know the story will re-learn and re-celebrate liberation as they do every year, and those who do not know why this night is different than all other nights will discover, and experience, the origin and meaning of Passover for the first time.
For this Sedar, I hid 6 numbered cards underneath random Sedar plates. These cards included the following questions:
In just one word…how do you envision entrapment?
In just one word…how do you envision expansion?
In just one word…how do you envision entrapment within yourself?
In just one word…how do you envision expansion within yourself?
In just one word…how do you envision entrapment outside of yourself?
In just one word…how do you envision expansion outside of yourself?
Following this order, I asked those who received a card to share their word. I wish I could have remembered them, or written them down, or maybe it’s better to keep these answers private. Everyone was invited to mediate on these questions with their tables.
Then, I read this poem I wrote specifically for the evening:
Have I Resigned to Fate?
have i resigned to fate:
a vine clasping my throat
a breath trapped under
the tightened bones
of my chest
escaping from a point of
have i resigned to
endlessly turning over
in stimulated sleep
forgetting what remains
within my control
other than silence?
the cold rain never seems to end
a river flows through
my empty hands
a plane takes off between my ears
& this familiar, hypnotic repetition
alludes to something deeper,
the same body of water
coursing through every valley
i’ve been awake for days
on the periphery of fear,
a fraction of what it means
to be broken,
a dark tunnel
where a light flickers
at the end
& a spiral uncoils
nothing at all
a voiceless ether
leaving my body -
would you call that a miracle
you can’t perceive
or explain? it’s only natural
what else we could build
in place of the current course,
our formless shapes moving
through a pinhole
have i resigned to fate
a jagged slope
the form of hands
is my spirit trapped in a well
is history trapped in
the final question
a vibrational pull
on a cosmic scale
unseen & untouched
yet still continuous,
how will i know if i’ve resigned to
fate disappearing from
but belonging, eternally,
to everyone’s hands,
if it would have been enough
to gut the walls of our house,
for a deep, prolonged breath
to rise from our bellies
& fill our chests
if it would have been enough
to survive the cold, roaring ocean
parting our lips
to carve olam in mud
the bitter question
Notes on Process:
Recalling a personal narrative of entrapment, I wrote through a recent struggle during which I felt so trapped that I kept asking myself: Is this my fate? Have I resigned completely to this fate? Am I trapped here forever? - a troubling series of questions with no possible answer - no perceivable escape. I borrowed language and concepts from the Haggadah and the Book of Exodus, and drew upon my own story, in order to weave together internal and external questions of oppression and liberation - or entrapment and expansion, as I framed it here.
The end result is my own story of Exodus, and I was humbled by the opportunity to share it with a warm crowd of people - most of whom I didn’t know! - in a format which was completely new to me.
Thanks to Rabbi Becky Joseph, Sarah Wolfman-Robichaud, and everyone else who helped curate this special evening. My day job has never intersected with my art practice but I’m so glad it happened!
PS, No pictures were taken as it was Shabbat.
Here is the sound / video collage I showed at Bath House last night.
I love working in collage because of the form’s history in feminist / DIY / activist art-making. The appropriation / transformation / détournement of found sound and video is an inherently subversive, rebellious act against “precious” objects and bourgeois art practices. Collage reclaims the image recuperated from the underground and brings it back to the underground. I want to make art with very little start-up cost. The end result of this piece is mine, and I made it for all my suffering bitchez.
The piece is hallucinatory, experiential, and atmospheric. Of course, I think it’s meant for a big screen and big speakers in a crowded dark room with your friends and comrades, but I am also interested in how the experience might take place on your phone, during your lunch break, among the hustle and bustle of everyday waking life.
Preview for the 20 minute film / sound collage I will show at Bath House on Wednesday. I might have more to say about it once I upload the full piece :)
The “creative process”
I’m presenting an audiovisual piece on 3.20.19 at Bath House
I will share this equinox performance with art-loves alex cruse & gin hart
Dm for address
Gorgeous flier by my friend alex cruse