2014 | durational performance, letterpress, collograph, linen, corn
Amber Waves explores the historical relationship between farming and technology, and their impact on the ecology of the rural landscape. It is a memoriam for the family farm, and a call for the return of good stewardship and agrarian ideals; to create a culture that works for the land, rather than having the land for us.
Amber Waves acts a performative recapitulation of two American agricultural methodologies: pre-mechanization and post-mechanization. The performance is preceded by an oration of the poetic text, The Land, The Man, The Machine. Drawing on rhythm, time, reverence, and violence Amber Waves presents the dualities in our relationship with the land, and the estrangement of the body within the rural landscape, and its impact on the overall health of both the land and our culture.
The performance itself begins before it is in public view: in the field, in the studio.
The 15 yards of linen printed for the fields, or acreage, were made from two corn collograph plates. The plates were made by sewing corn from Dekalb, Illinois onto a piece scrap of material and running this through the etching press both as a pressure print and a collagraph. That process is seen here . The plates themselves become an object of residue from the performative act of sowing the fields through printing.
Watch a video by Kellen Walker of rehearsals and finalized performance without poetic lead.
Read more on this performance: Cultivating an American Landscape: Notes on Amber Waves
Read more on this performance: Re-membering Labor the Rural Body
2014 | performance residue, installation
"Finite Growth" @ Human Thread Gallery - Chicago
Install Detail @ Human Thread Gallery - Chicago
Field No. 01 is a remnant of the de-installation performance, Amber Waves. By subjecting two fields to different types of handling in both the means of their production, as well as physically within the performance, Amber Waves,explores two histories of farming fields while examining the impact of industry on both the land and the body as laborer. Field No. 1 represents an earlier land-based form of agriculture–smaller acreages, rotated and diverse–their reaping the task of a community. Within the performance this field is handled carefully by multiple performers, and gently placed within its container, as a memoriam. In direct opposition is Field No. 2 which is representative of agricultural practice industrialized; a large and uniform acreage. It is handled by one performer, whom violently rips the field down, forces it into its container, and carelessly throws it aside.