Meat Space Diaries #4: ODE premiered, finally, here in Portland, Oregon two weeks ago yesterday. I was pleased at the contrasting responses we received. Several attendees of the Body Mind Centering Association's first evening of performance works approached me with faces of utter delight and astonishment; others were wary about framing their responses in words; a few told me they were terrified or simply unsettled. Carla Mann, professor of dance at Reed College, wrote me that the piece was "wonderfully hard and soft." Could I be more pleased? Those who could hold the tensions did. Those who couldn't chose where to stand with the ambiguity and didn't look back. I think that's okay. I think my job as a maker of performance works that are, I hope, "worth a grown person's time," to quote Shelby Foote, is not to persuade my audience to see what I see, but to show them what I see, and let them look.
In my experience with raising pigs, a pig is remarkably suited to its own skin, and at the same time terrified by the imposition of structure on their soft, three-dimensional experience. How do I make art from that place? It's a living question, and there is no quick and simple answer.