“The Talisman” was performed on 14th St. in Manhattan, 3-4 hours daily featuring a hybrid muppet-shaman offering solutions to life’s problems in the form of homemade talismans. During the performance passersby were offered free talismans consisting of “Old People’s Hair,” “Enchanted Bird Feather,” “Squirrel Head,” or “Organic Nebraska Grass.” Audience requests ranged from increased confidence, better health care, new jobs opportunities, and eternal love. This piece investigates the ways in which objects take on meaning, either as sacred or mundane, through the action of ritual and magical thinking.
Explaining the idea for Untitled (Cake Box).
“Four Track Memory'' is a video composed of four, synchronized video channels, featuring a performance of The Beatles seminal album “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” from memory. Each video is a single, uninterrupted take of myself performing the entire album broken down into vocal/lyrics, bass, guitar and percussion. A commentary on the fallibility of memory, each channel was recorded months apart from one another and the flaws of the performance are maintained. A Beatles fan will immediately notice that the piece is not a perfect rendition, but in fact based on memories of sounds and impressions.
“Felix, Flowers, Flags & Poems” was performed in Chelsea, New York on the first Valentine’s Day after 9/11. My character “The Adenoid” led this improvised performance, selling authentic candy from Felix Gonzales Torres’ “Untitled (Placebo)” ($1.25), readings of love poems by Rumi ($1.00), plastic flowers, and American flags (both $.75) the entire afternoon. This piece questions how we place value, symbolic or monetary, on objects and what makes them authentic.
“Grapefruit Piece” features myself play-acting as a teenager locked up in his room, imagining himself as a rockstar, and violently eating a grapefruit in the process. Drawing on elements of the teenage imagination, rebellion, and feelings of being misunderstood this piece operates as a larger metaphor for the art world and the absurdity of making art. Artists often operate in ways that are highly emotionally charged and create things that on the outside can appear utterly meaningless but somehow still communicate with the viewer. This piece connects that absurdity with the melodrama of the angst-ridden teenager as a means to explore the role of art and the artist.