Tuesday, July 20, 2010

An army of lovers can never be defeated

On July 10th I went to an incredible screening at Light Industry, an amazing venue for film and video in Brooklyn. The program, coordinated by Scott Treleaven, featured his own films, collaborations with Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, Genesis's own work and was sealed with a performance by Locrian. It was an intense Saturday evening that found me in no mood for bars. As I wandered back, over the Manhattan bridge and through the East Village on foot I was consumed with thoughts about the possibilities of art and music, life, love and revolution. When I returned to that strange apartment that I am calling home for the Summer, I put on a particularly lovely John Cale and Terry Riley record and languished in the particular rush of being blown apart and then gently put back together by a visual/sonic/spatial experience. Because, isn't that, on some level, what art is supposed to do?

>It is a process ov individual and collective experimentation and research with no finite answers, dogmas or unchallengeable truths. It is for each to discover his or her own understanding ov thee questions that suggest themselves, and through that voyage ov discovery to find their personal and true identity, thee True Will.

Watching Temple Ov Psychick Youth ritual videos from 1990, Treleaven's Salivation Army and Breyer P-Orridge's new works Weird Woman was an appropriate end to a day that had me thinking long and hard about the incessant quality of binaries, wondering as I often do why we want to be either this or that and well-named and labeled instead of acknowledging that it is never that simple. I think binaries are at the root of a lot of civilized problems, and I am not alone. The Burroughs/Gysin-esque cut up technique that appears in both Treleaven's and Breyer P-Orridge's work speaks to that concern, it refuses to let things settle, so they don't cohere into this or that, things that we can name. I have not only a great respect for the work produced by Breyer P-Orridge, Treleaven and their cohort, I really like it.  I like that it effects me on both a cool intellectual level and a raw, vulnerable emotional one. I like the way it looks, and I like it's tone and it's aim to undo the impulse to be complacent and accept that things are as they are and remind the viewer that (in)actions and identities have consequences and should be undertaken mindfully.

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