Monday, 8 August 2011

Legally Lolita - A Performance about our Fathers

Problem: We are all affected by patriarchal power, the manipulations of our fathers- the lawmaker (my dad) and the self-made man (simbi's dad), mirror the way society tries to manipulate us through intimidation, isolation and flattery.

Part 1- Addresses how our father figures are liars and stealers who project their crimes onto us. We are dressed as schoolgirls and are caught stealing and sing a capella Jane's Addiction's 'Been Caught Stealing' accompanied by toy electric guitar. We are accompanied by projections of Rush Limbaugh, Bill Gates, Tiger Woods, President Suharto.
Part 2 - Is about how discipline intimidates you and tricks you into wanting it and being sorry and instead you have to learn to speak up against it. Nicola sings Throbbing Gristle's 'Discipline' and builds a jail out of duct tape, while Simbi jams noise style over the top. Then Simbi dressed as a policeman gives orders to Nicola like a dog, like "Sit!," "Roll Over," "Get Back in Jail" and Nicola obeys. Then when in jail, Nicola apologises over and over again "Sorry, sorry" and then Simbi reveals she is just a schoolgirl and teaches Nicola to say "I'm not sorry" and "Why the fuck, should I be sorry."
Part 3 - By using the power of sharing a joint and becoming gothic lolita's we temporarily escape the discipline and jail of our fathers and play hand clap games and jump rope, but we get caught and tied up in the image of lolita's as Reese Witherspoon in Clueless and Legally Blonde and Athena, daughter of Zeus.
Part 4- We find better female role models as we transform to our Orisha's, Yemaya (Mother deity and ocean goddess) and Oya (Warrior spirit of the wind, lightning, fertility, fire and magic) and sing "Don't You Love Her Madly" by The Doors- as we successfully walk out the door of the Jail.
Part 5- As the Orisha's and characters from Vera Chytilov√°'s 'Sedmikr√°sky' (Daisies) We learn how to answer manipulative phrases, ie. "I always wanted to be an intellectual and a lawyer, but you can do that. Well you didn't loser, I have a chance to be a great artist" and "I'll blame your mother and scream at her and hit her. She should leave you if you do that. I am not making you hit her" then Simbi sings Carole King's, 'Tapestry' and Nicola as Oya creates a tornado amongst the gravestones of books.

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Mau ke Bulan - A Journey to the Dark Side of the Moon

A performance that investigates the dark (Lilith) side of the Moon and Mothers. Held at T-Art Space, Ubud, Bali, Indonesia.

Comment By Simbi:
We all know mothers have their dark sides just like anyone and some of
us believe the idealization of mothers is oppressive to culture and
society, as well as mothers, creating layers of shame, guilt, denial,
manipulation, and deception.  We decided to dive into the dark sides
of our mothers while at the same time finding our own dark side, using
Dark Moon Lilith as a representation.  Astrologically I am a Scorpio
dark moon and Nicola is Virgo.  Whitney Houston/Blondie and Woody
Allen. Anyway. We confronted our deepest fears when blindfolded, mine
is to be tortured, Nicola to fall down and symbolically be defaced.
Both Nicola and I felt the need to represent something for our mothers
to help them.  Nicola needed to be the stoic Asian elephant and I
needed to be a princess, a saint and a Christmas present.  After
confronting our fears, I am tortured after being tied to my princess
throne and being forced to listen to the "Duck Sauce - Barbra
Streisand" song, and she falls down the stairs and has a face drawn on
her ass to symbolize defacement, we are able to detourne our roles by
sexualizing them.  Nicola rides the pink elephant and I stab an apple,
wear bows on my shoes and say "Oh God."  After releasing the false
roles we open ourselves up to African spirits, Oya goddess of
thunderstorms and dance for me and Yemaya who is an endlessly coming
woman and ocean of endless bliss for Nicola.  The projected Virgin
Mary transforms into Madonna, and we quote from Mary Magdalene's
gospel -- disdained by the official version of the Bible -- "I knew
you, but you did not know me, because you mistook my garment for my
true self."
Finally I teach moon salutations to the audience to honor mothers and
their teachings, both dark and light sides of the moon.

Comment By Nicola:
My time in Indonesia, has been marked by a lot of digging up of emotions about my family - submissive wives, Asian wives, Asian family responsibility etc. I did not expect it.

After spending time on the shamanic death of capitalism, Simbi and I realised that a whole lot of negative neurosis were still present in our psyches due to our dysfunctional families (who were also in ways products of the manipulations of capitalism). So, we started with our mothers. We were intrigued about the 'good' archetype of the mother, when there is an obvious bad 'Lilith' side. However this Lilith side offers us strengths as well. Due to us witnessing our mother's very shameful positions, we both have very little shame. Our mothers were both victims and drew us in with sympathy so first we sing "Let it Be." My mother, a victim of her own family's superstitions, subconsciously placed a lot of guilt on me especially after leaving all her family she left my abusive father, as I had to become the father of the family from a young age - she made me into a stoic elephant, to symbolise this I make an elephant out of masking tape on the window and try to fit my figure in it. Simbi was a saint, a family gift, a princess and a pesky cat for her mother, she sings 'When the Saints Come Marching In," I sing James Blunt's "You're Beautiful" as I make her up as the Princess and then Simbi turns into a cat and sings "Wish You Were Here" as I get angry with a pink stuffed cat.

We turn these expectations around by facing our biggest fears when blindfolded - confronting our fears of the dark moon. 'Simbi's fear is to be tortured, so I torture her as the Princess and sing the awfully annoying "Duck Sauce (Barbra Streisand)" song. Then, I face my blindfolded fear of falling down stairs, I myself don't want to be subjugated in the basement. So anyway, I blindfold myself and climb down the stairs to the ground level of the Gallery, while Simbi plays Carole King's "I Feel the Earth Move" - here begins our point of transformation. I fall down the last few stairs, Simbi then 'tortures' me by painting a face on my ass. We are having fun now. I then ride a toy pink elephant and get paint all over it from my ass. We transform then into orisha's (from Yoruba/Africa) with rituals for Oya, Undergoddess of the Niger River and Yemaya, the mother goddess. After we are transformed we do moon salutations with a plucky participant from the crowd.

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

The Punisher v. The Fairy Queen (Sibling Rivalry)

This performance transforms the energy from dysfunctional family roles and the influence of 'psychedelic' hippy siblings into a multiplicity of healing roles from our new community - contemporary post-modern popular culture.

Problem: Dysfunctional families generate different archetypes amongst the children such as the 'family hero,' 'scapegoat,' 'mascot' and the 'lost child.' Combined with these roles our siblings have been products of the 70's pyschedelic hippy generation where their individual pursuit of happiness has become a tool for the 'psychedelic' manipulations of capitalism. We tackle personal symbols of our dysfunctional roles (which are mostly also rooted in 'psychedelic uprising') and represent new multiplicity where we can functionally play all the roles and do not succumb to individualisation of identity and become new social healers.

We present our new healing roles: karaoke, hip-hop, Gayatri Spivak, Deleuze & Guattari, electroclash, mutant superheroes, graffiti and feminist noise by using the techniques of data moshing and shredding with projections over the symbols of our siblings: Nirvana, Bon Jovi, Noam Chomsky, Deepak Chopra, Tennessee William's 'A Streetcar Named Desire,' 'Dirty Dancing,' fairy queens, 'A Rebel Without a Cause,' and Brian Jonestown Massacre.

In Part 1 - All Apologies Nirvana v Eminem v Bon Jovi; Deepak Chopra v 'The Subaltern' Spivak v Noam Chomsky v Deleuze & Guattari v Tennessee Williams
In Part 2 - Simbi sings her own electroclash song over footage from 'Dirty Dancing' and Nicola becomes a comic book super hero aka. Rougue or Storm from X-men and sings New World Order by Ministry over Simbi being the fairy queen playing the piano and then becomes a graffitti-ing Punisher over footage from 'Rebel Without A Cause.
In Part 3 - Simbi and Nicola make a noise jam over the top of Brian Jonestown Massacre, during the show the footage was projected on us, so we actually weren't making music to the footage but I think it goes pretty well.

Simbi Comments
story of my life (electroclash v. dirty dancing, sibling rivalry part 2)

Sealskin coat of arms
One turntable and five alarms
Dollhouse furniture I can't break
Canopy bed and lacy drapes

Swamp of ghosts and basement holes
where fire and torture pull us into the mire
My mother's an enormous octopus who oozes tears
My father changes the channel -- one more rape, one more fear

Do you feel insecure? Take it out on me, I'm so very pure
I"ll love you endlessly. In the end I'll even set you free.

My wrists are blood and my lips sewn shut
The leaves change color one more year.
My dreams and visions take me out of here.

Cocoon of music
I wove you with agile fingers and fragile feelings.
Every color of the rainbow soft around me
like dewdrops on fresh flowers.
But I must destroy you
to find my powers.

Do you feel insecure? Take it out on me, I'm so very pure.
I'll love you endlessly. In the end, I'll even set me free.

The forest is deep
The forest is bold.
This is where illusions lose hold.

Geisha shadow
Magic daughter
Writing my destiny with melting face
Broken heels
Throwing ashes
Dead wood
Empty orchestra
Immaculate heart

Dressed in kimono
Lying on the bed
Oragami bats are overhead.

At least you knew me from before
All the cracks in this broken down whore
When I don't know what life is for
We can go to the limit one time more

On a ship
On a trip
this imp is wearing my rainbow dress
I'm wearing his combat boots. Awkward but strange
how well they suit.
He wants to break me down, take me power.
But as usual my words win him over.

I tell him the story of the quilombo in Brazil
where children of escaped slaves are living still
How I scrambled below the waterfall
and breathed deep pure air.
Saw pink river dolphins.
I found my home there.

Goodbye to all my magic styles
gained entrance to every club in new york and berlin through those psychic wiles
Naked I sat clothed in my skin
No tricks, no shadows, no projected ideals
Simply me and all that surrounded me

Together we could be
broken harmony

on part 1:
gayatri spivak's reading of to the lighthouse. the reason mr. ramsey the philosopher couldn't get past "r" in the alphabet is because its the beginning of his own name. representing that western philosophy couldn't progress because it could analyze other things, but didn't understand itself. and he didn't understand himself, incidentally because he couldn't understand his wife, mrs. ramsay.

S&M for Lost Children: The Family Trilogy

Soon all of S&M's (Simbi Dare and Nicola Morton)'s performances will be available on DVD for peer 2 peer exchange.

We always spend a lot of time talking, here is a prologue to our trilogy of family performances - 'Mau ke Bulan - Journey to the Darkside of the Moon,' 'The Punisher v The Fairy Queen,' and 'Legally Lolita.'

Comment by Simbi:
We take guided pathways through the symbolic underworld of our
emotions in a shamanic healing of our family issues. Family
relationships are psychologically wedded to the structures of society,
so exploring the neuroses of the family is a way to explore the
neurosis of fascism, capitalism, law, and so on.  This is potentially
cathartic not merely for performers but for the audience. Before the
shows we talked and talked about our issues in childhood and found
ways to visually, musically represent the most vivid memories and
emotions.  Luckily we were in Java and Bali where we could get daily
massages, bringing up so much painful material led us to states of
paralysis, impatience, aggression and projection and we had a lot of
intense energy to release, so thank you to all the wonderful massage
therapists in Java and Bali who made this possible, we couldn't have
done these shows without you for sure.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

12 Ways to Masturbate with a Melodica

at Mangkubumen Art Party di Pendopo Mangkubumen, Universitas Widya Mataram, Yogyakarta

Problem: Judgement of sexual identity and selfishness of masturbation

This was a plan to enter the collective fantasy in 5 minutes by "veiling" masturbation concepts one note on the melodica at a time. By using the "veil" of conceptualisation and musical keys we expose 12 different auto-erotic acts as gateways to the collective, playful and international sexual fantasies of the collective unconscious. The problem of taking a selfish narcissistic act and immersing it in a crowd re: Slavoj Zizek in "Violence" (2008), is counteracted by sharing and healing ie. by giving away each hand decorated melodica and healing with our noise music. Our 12 Melodica masturbation themes are: c-fantasy, c#-paint, d-thumbs, d#-flowers, e-chains, f-asphyxiation, f#-stars, g-humping, g#-scissoring, a-water, a#-pressure, b-knife.  By not communicating anything of a sexual nature to the audience, we are trying to prove sexual fantasy is not just a western prerogative/consumer product but something more rooted in the earth and in the spaces between our consciousnesses and of course the human‘s playful nature. Children start to play along in the performance which supports the subconscious playfulness and collective nature of our auto-erotic fantasies