Per­for­mance, 2009

cura­ted by Katie Bach­ner for Johans­son Pro­jects, Oak­land, CA

„Cocoon – The Pos­si­bi­li­ty of Birth“ was a one-hour per­for­mance, com­mis­sio­ned after a car (or an alien space­craft?) cras­hed into the front of the gal­le­ry (Johans­son Pro­jects). Per­for­med during the Oak­land Art Mur­mur, 2009.

A man in a busi­ness suit arri­ves with a stran­ge object, undres­ses and crawls insi­de. Cut off from the envi­ron­ment and from social inter­ac­tion, he’s like the shapeless, fra­gi­le lar­vae of a but­ter­fly – or moth. Through the cocoon we can hard­ly see what’s hap­pe­ning insi­de. We see lights, hear stran­ge noi­ses, sonic feed­back and vocal frag­ments. It’s a strugg­le. But the iso­la­ti­on of the cocoon beco­mes unbe­ara­ble and suf­fo­ca­ting. Then, a meta­mor­pho­sis occurs: slow­ly, the cocoon breaks open, paint sprays out, covers audi­ence and cocoon. A fresh­ly hat­ched artist emerges. 

***

From the per­for­mance, the image seri­es “Cocoon Per­for­mance Abs­tracts” arose as a curious, unin­ten­ded by-product.

– All Pho­tos by Antho­ny Kurtz