Action is Drawing: Acute Zonal Occult Outer
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A number of international performance artists were selected by the Center for a project that aimed to position performance, frequently a collaborative undertaking, in relation to drawing, which is often a solitary act. Over six weeks, each performance artist, working separately and sequentially on different days and for different lengths of time, modified the space to accommodate their activity. This involved confronting and working with, around or over what remained installed from the previous artist’s activity. The significance of the project was that it revealed how new meaning can arise through the marks made by an artist responding to those left by their predecessor. My research interest here was in testing the boundaries of collaboration, exploring the nature of response when obliteration and excess are used as working methods. My work involved using a variety of media (prepared sign-writing, molasses, graphite, paper, and my blood) to make marks and place text on every surface in the gallery, including walls, windows, floor and ceiling. This introduced a layering and density of marks, gestures and text which sought to obliterate what had gone before, and created an excess of stimuli for my successor. My work was also an allusion to American imperialism and institutional power, using the relation between obliteration and surviving trace as an analogue for political concerns appropriate to the location. An accompanying booklet, entitled The Drawing Papers: Action is Drawing: Acute Zonal Occult Outer, was produced by the Drawing Centre. Co-performers included: Fritz Welch (USA), Elena Beelaerts (Holland) and Jovi Scnell (USA), Alistair MacLennan (N.Ireland), Ryoga Katsuma (Japan), Kim Jones (USA), Crank Sturgeon (USA).
The Drawing Centre, New York
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