Friday, January 19, 1990

Christine Tamblyn wrote (privately):

The beginning movement [of “Brief Amaze” at The Lab] with the glass reminded me of old guard conceptual art pieces (Marioni, Kos, etc.) but didn’t really seem derivative. One can be in a genre without being derivative.

I like the vulnerability in your work – also a part of the charisma – ritual sacrifice to the audience. Your nudity became animal-like in a way that was quite disturbing. I found myself wondering if male nudity was more taboo than female nudity….

The face-painting was effectively visceral, and worked as a great set-up for the dopplegänger duel. I’ve always liked the way details accrue increasing significance as the piece unfolds in your work. Not really an aspect of narrative but an aspect of symbology and compression – the details like magnets attracting stray filings of meaning. The doppelgänger image continued to articulate itself (language or no) and the wrestling, strangling, etc. was wonderful – pathetic and absurd all at once, a Beckett-like clowning.

There seemed to be a string of false endings – like a box with false bottoms. First the reconciliation with the audience, then the erasure as a coda and finally the return to the beginning with the glass. It was like you were exhausting every possible stratagem of culmination.

[The title Brief Amaze was, in fact, from a section of Beckett's The Lost Ones.]