ejhill.tumblr took part in the annual Gala organised by Marina Abramović at The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles, in November 2011:
“For a total of about four hours, I was the most powerful person at my table. I watched as the wealthiest people I’ve never met, reluctantly took seats around me. First, their faces showed signs of stunned disbelief as they entered the space. Second, the awkward laughs and iPhone photos came, then it was confused and forced smiles as they sat down. Finally, came the extreme discomfort from the reality of the situation—they would actually have to eat in front of us. But interestingly enough, in a very rare and beautiful moment, the power dynamics that have existed for hundreds of years between artists and the wealthy had been reversed. The performance lasted only a few hours, but during those few hours, from a seemingly degraded position, I silently dictated an entire conversation. I was able to halt people mid-sentence by slowly turning and locking in on any one of the individuals at my table. They fumbled with their forks, stuttered on words and took out their phones to read invisible text messages. They employed all sorts of techniques to distract themselves in order to ease the tension. Periodically, someone would shake their head in contempt and frustration. Some only ate while I was turned away from them while others got up and left the table entirely.”Read more here
Not that I’m not a huge supporter of highly cynical and dream-crushing material, but sometimes Bon Iver and Joy Division do play softly in the background at appropriate times. That’s what happens when you always have music playing. And you can romanticize hurt. And sadness. And loneliness. It’s called every piece of art ever created. Your pain can definitely be pretty. I have several sketchbooks and a few really cool looking scars to prove it.
The point is, people will not see your life as a great heart-wrenching work of art. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t. Doesn’t mean you can’t make it. Sometimes accidental photographs end up being your favorites. Sometimes the light falls just right, and you put on the right song, and everything feel like a poem. And sometimes you find yourself in the middle of a bridge, in the middle of the park, in the middle of the city, in the middle of the rain, in the middle of the night, and someone very special will kiss you very deeply, and life will feel like a Coppola film. But better.
The full title of Victory Garden’s new show by Jackie Drury is:
"We Are Proud to Present a Presentation About the Herero of Namibia, Formerly Known as South-West Africa, From the German Sudwestafrika, Between the Years 1884-1915"
See this show. If you are in Chicago, see this show. If you can afford to fly from wherever you are to Chicago and care about theater, see this show. Seriously. See. This. Show.
All year I’ve been seeing shows that attend to discuss “race issues,” and while they’ve been thought provoking, they have all been incredible heady pieces. We Are Proud to Present is the first piece I have seen that has been able to discuss race relations in America (and Africa) without falling into the “intellectual” trap. We witness the interactions instead of being told. And it is funny as hell.
I repeat. See this show.
For more info visit: http://www.victorygardens.org/onstage/proud-to-present.php
I strongly believe that thoughts become things. I can’t take it to the extremes that some people do (in one of my law of attraction books it says that children with glasses cannot see the trouble in their parents marriage…Obviously there is a fine line between belief in thoughts and bullshit. Anyway)
So when I got food poisoning Sunday night, half of me almost expected it. I have been stressed out and asking that big old question WHAT AM I DOING WITH MY LIFE over and over again, its not a surprise I got sick.
I just looked up food poisoning in “You can Heal Your Life” by Louise L. Hay (a beautiful combination of inspiration and bullshit. I like it anyway, but I can wade through the weird parts) and according to her food poisoning is caused by feeling defenseless and allowing others to take control. Which is grossly accurate to my life right now. I feel very out of control, and all of my actions seem to be driven by what others want (or what I perceive others to want). I have to figure out what I want to do, and how to get that.
In other news, I can eat Saltines now. So that’s exciting.
On Sunday night I was lucky enough to score tickets to The House Theater’s Death and Harry Houdini. Ever since I saw their show The Sparrow in Boston, I’ve been especially excited to see a House production in their home in Chicago. This is the second remount of Death and Harry Houdini, which is an original House production.
The show tells the story of Harry Houdini’s life, with a focus on his obsession to conquer death. In usual House fashion, the spectacle is gorgeous. My personal favorite is the interpretation of Death as a man in all black on stilts with a gas mask on his face. Whenever he takes someone away he tips his hat to Harry.
Then there’s the fact that they do all of these amazing magic tricks, in an alley set up no less (people on either side of the performance space). Most astonishing is the Water Torture Cell, which you can see in the video above. When I saw it on Sunday one of the two curtains that is supposed to drop around the cell got stuck and I freaked the fuck out. They had a game plan and later during the talk back they explained how they run all sorts of emergency situations each week. But still. This show was gorgeous and captivating. I can’t wait to see another show at the House!