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Franklin Furnace: The Art of Performance Documentation

Martha_WilsonVisual Arts
Thursday, December 12 | 7:00 p.m.
Franklin Furnace: The Art of Performance Documentation
Martha Wilson in person
Albin O. Kuhn Library Gallery

Martha Wilson is an artist and the founding director of Franklin Furnace. Wilson’s own work in photography, performance and video art explores female subjectivity through role-playing, costume transformations and “invasions” of other people’s personas.

Wilson, was a member of DISBAND, an all-female performance group, and it is in this context that she developed the character of Alexander M. Plague, Jr., one of several personas (both fictional and real; including that of Barbara Bush) that she has adopted over the years.

This performance is one of several films and performances in the series organized by the Center for Art, Design and Visual Culture, Jump Over Time, curated by Joanna Raczynska ’98 of the National Gallery of Art in Washington, DC.  Jump Over Time looks at some creative uses of video documentation as an idiom and form used by media artists. When does the video documentation of an event shift from witness to evidence? If a performance is designed for the camera is the urgency, the live-ness, of the performance obliterated?  When the video maker’s intent is to re-present a specific historic period, action, or happening, can reenactments be considered documentation? Selected works as well as visiting artists and archivists will speak to the many ways archives—brimming with mediated experiences—that are critical to cultural determination, memory and practice.

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