"Transgenesis II: Dead of Dawn" was loosely inspired by the Ken Vostell Fluxus event, "You: a De-Collage Happening". As in its forebear, different sites on a single rural estate were used as stations in a series of loosely choreographed participatory events. However, unlike the Fluxus event, which re-staged socio-historical traumas of the 20th century, "Dead of Dawn" models processes of conversion from the spiritual to material and from individual subject to ‘blobjective’ entity using the geological process through which carbon-based life-forms are compressed over millenia into fossil fuels as a model.
The protagonist of the piece is a fellow visual artist, Young Joon Kwak, who also performs original music in a drag persona as part of the group Xena Xurner. In this performance in "oil drag" the duality inherent to fossil fuels, which are at once the distillation of power and also decay, is not so much inscribed on the body as oozed out of it.
"Dead of Dawn" is the second installment of a larger cycle of projects I'm currently at work on, provisionally entitled "Transgenisis: in order to survive ourselves".
The general goal of each of the projects is to explore the meaning –and even the basic possibility-- of narrative outside of the subject/object dialectic to suit the needs of our era, which is at once 'post-humanist' and at the same time, utterly and devastatingly shaped by humans. Through the surreal scenarios generated from this basic premise, the hope is to find ways to represent collective affect, much of it traumatic, that is inherent in both the transition to a post-humanist worldview, and the silenced trauma of all 'Othered' forms of subjectivity -animal, ecological, etc.-- that the anthropocene era is built upon.
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