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ASHER HARTMAN & CAROL MCDOWELL, Performance Guest Curators (6 month residence)
October 2009 - February 2010
1st weekend of every month at Sea and Space

Performance is up and out of the margins again, lately as a hybrid of practices that highlight the collective exchange between performer, gesture, spectator, and space, whose lineage can be traced back to performance constructions of the 1970s. Beginning the first weekend of October and continuing through February 2010, INSTRUMENTS OF RISK will present a new performance work each month at Sea and Space Explorations. In this series of events, we see artists performing the social choreographies of our personal and cultural lives. What moves our bodies today? This is physical conceptual performance with an unabashed theatricality and rigorous abstraction, steering through the unresolved complexities of our world. Focusing on the body as a compass, the artists in this series grapple with multiple means through which we understand history, speech, location, culture, force, and self in relation to the world around them and within.

INSTRUMENTS OF RISK will present new works by MARIEL CARRANZA, CYNTHIA LEE & SHYAMALA MOORTY, MARCUS CIVIN, FRANCESCO GAGLIARDI, ASHLEY HUNT & TAISHA PAGGETT, DAWN KASPER and others. Mariel Carranza opens this performance series with a 72-hour solo durational performance event called Living Matter, Performance #1 . On the first weekend in November, Cynthia Lee and Shyamala Moorty of the PostNatyam Collective will perform Trace , a poetic interactive dancing installation that charts their contemporary South Asian choreographic processes. In December, Francesco Gagliardi continues his riotous theatrical lectures on Rope , and Marcus Civin will perform a wild new conceptual script construction. The New Year will begin with the next installment of Ashley Hunt and Taisha Paggett's ongoing project, On thought, movement, and politics in January 2010 . This pilot series ends in February with Aggression | Acoustics | Meditation | Movements artist Dawn Kasper performing a new visual poem.   Instruments of Risk is curated by Asher Hartman and Carol McDowell.


--Performance Schedule --

“on existence: a visual poem, a study in being”
Saturday, February 6th at 8pm

Sea and Space Explorations’ performance series INSTRUMENTS of RISK continues with Dawn Kasper’s “on existence: a visual poem, a study in being,” a performance that combines slapstick and monologue to ask questions about life and death.

WHAT: DAWN KASPER, performance art
WHEN:  Saturday, February 6, 8pm
WHERE: Sea and Space Explorations, 4755 York Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90042
INFO: www.seaandspace.org or (323) 982-0854

Admission is FREE.

Los Angeles, CA. Calculated and spontaneous, Dawn Kasper combines slapstick comedy and monologue to ask questions about life and death.  On a small stage that doubles as a sculpture, Kasper inhabits different personas through the use of props, musical instruments, and makeup to ask “What is a physical object? and “What is existence?”  Constantly in play and always agile, Kasper’s performances are frequently ritualized through the repetition of words and actions.

“I find fleeting cognitive and emotional understanding through a physical process, a process I articulate through a series charged, raw actions.  I find the line beyond the characters I embody within my performances, creating these characters as foreigners to my body. I kill them and swallow them to inhabit their essence and to keep their deaths alive throughout the duration of a performance.  In my re-enactments of death scenes and embodiment of various personas, I channel these characters in order to search for clues to the meaning of life.”


Saturday, Jan 2nd and Sunday, Jan 3rd, 12-6 pm
RECEPTION:  Jan 2nd, 6-8pm

Artists Taisha Paggett and Ashley Hunt will introduce their research into “On movement, thought, and politics” through a series of conceptual exercises that borrow from the philosophy of self-improvement and the structure of public park “fitness trails,” known as Par Courses, in order to complicate ideas of self. In this two-day performance, viewers will lead themselves through exercise stations designed to work in the areas of kinesthetic, cognitive, and political development, including the ways in which these areas are addressed within contemporary art and dance.

“Etre fort pour utile” (“Being strong to be useful”) was a motto of Georges Hébert, the French physical educator who invented the Par Course, a motto that calls up the varying ideological underpinnings that notions of physical and mental fitness invariably carry. It is against the backdrop of such ideological training that Par Course A offers its experiments, acknowledging that the powers that shape us also limit our conceptions of self-improvement, self-knowledge and agency. By directing viewers to consider such limits, the installation encourages new critical relationships to the concepts and patterns that move and shape us. A key tension within the work arises around the traditional dichotomy of body and mind, a cultural presumption that, according to Paggett and Hunt, diminishes both the intelligence of the body and the physicality of thought, as such a separation between the two is never so simple.

Par Course A is the latest realization of Paggett and Hunt’s effort to bring their respective disciplines of dance and art together and, at the same time, see them fall away so that their specificity becomes irrelevant. The exercises of Par Course A are drawn from a workshop titled, “On Movement, Thought and Politics,” which was developed originally during a residency at the BAK center for contemporary art in Utrecht, the Netherlands. Somewhere between a movement class, a lecture and a conversation on political agency, this workshop allowed Paggett and Hunt to lead participants through their research into concepts at the heart of their disciplines, drawn from various somatic practices, phenomenology, psychoanalysis, radical pedagogy, activism and political philosophy. The workshop was also recently employed in the building of a performance and video project with members of the Los Angeles based Garment Worker Center (2009).

Taisha Paggett and Ashley Hunt have been working together for five years, bringing together their respective backgrounds in dance, visual art, teaching and activism. Their works include the 2005 exhibition and booklet, Undeliverable Address: 54 Questions that will not be Answered by the White House, and a workshop they developed in 2007 titled, On Movement, Thought and Politics, which was also used to generate a video installation with the Los Angeles Based Garment Worker Center in 2009. For more information: http://ashleyhuntwork.net/ http://www.taishapaggett.net/


Saturday, December 5, 8pm

An exercise in recollection based on memories - mine and other people's - of the city of Rome. A lecture of sorts, and an indirect city portrait encompassing reading, personal narration, manipulation of objects, and super8 film projection.

Francesco Gagliardi is a performance artist, historian of performance and filmmaker based in New York City. He studied theatre and philosophy in Italy and in the UK and has been working internationally as an actor, director and performance artist for over a decade. In 2000 he translated, directed, and performed in the first Italian production of Gertrude Stein's "Doctor Faustus Lights the Lights." He is currently working on a series of invisible performances of mental tasks, on a long essay on the photographic documentation of performance art, and on an article on the performance work of Stuart Sherman. Programs of his work were recently presented in Los Angles (The Wulf, December 2008), Berlin (Miss Micks, January 2009), Torino, Italy (quindicifebbraio, June 2009), and New York City (The Ontological-Hysteric Theater, September 2009).


Friday, December 4, 8pm



In "The American Rifle, Part 1," Marcus Civin will take a look at early America through unlikely kaleidoscopic visions of Jean-Paul Marat and Charlotte Corday’s France, Wilhelm Reich’s Orgone Box, and something resembling a National Rifle Association.

“Smoke and golden torches, I fill a mangled, grey plastic tub using a smaller, but similarly abused grey pail—one quart at a time from the pail, till half the tub is filled with fetid, greasy, brown liquid. From the shadows, the hunters sing a rousing chorus. I sit in the tub. My writing desk—a plank of wood set across my tub--I punch holes in the plank of wood. I spit a mouth-sized tooth. Out the window, hunters raise camp. I spit another mouth-sized tooth. In my tub, my energy increases, radiates back to me. Here, my killers surround me. We sit in chairs, my killers and I. We talk sensibly, consult books. My killers bring back inside what I had left outside (cards, firecrackers). My killers wrap my head, wrap my oversize shoes, check my identification. I draw a playing card, paint over it. I draw a playing card, scratch out its number and suit... ...” -- Marcus Civin

Marcus Civin's text-and-prop-based performance works include: B O U N T Y, JohnnyAngel (with Sandy de Lissovoy), The American Rifle: Parts 1, 2, & 3 (in progress), and a performance collaborative with Candice Lin called Cacus. Marcus is for burnt art, orange peel art, grape-stem art. Marcus is for water music, New Romantics, Neo-Enthusiasts, polytemporal construction, and wooden, plaster, silver objects—objects that bend. Marcus earned an MFA in Studio Art from University of California, Irvine, and a BA in Theater from Brown University. Recently, Marcus has exhibited and performed at Chung King Project for Perform Now!, at LAXART and compactspace as a part of Monster Mongers and Retailers of Other Strange Satellites, at Betalevel, Monte Vista Projects, and High Energy Constructs in Los Angeles, Tight Space in Santa Ana, and Ruffin Gallery at University of Virginia.


created and performed by Cynthia Lee and Shyamala Moorty
SATURDAY Nov. 7, 2009 gallery open 7-10 PM/performance at 8:30 PM
SUNDAY Nov. 8, 2009 gallery open 1-5 PM/performance at 2:30 PM
followed by reception

a courtesan beckons from a storefront window...cross-rhythmic voices interrupt and lose each other on a SKYPE call... fragments of precolonial Indian erotic poetry litter the floor, waiting to be reframed by a los angeleno audience in the here and now...

How do our bodies remember, dismember, and reshape the traces of the past? In "Trace," Cynthia Lee and Shyamala Moorty grapple with a fragmented South Asian aesthetic legacy through a contemporary lens, combining live performance, interactive installation, video, and poetic documentation. With long-distance contributions from Sandra Chatterjee and Anjali Tata, the work includes traces from the Post Natyam Collective's ongoing transnational creative project (www.postnatyam.blogspot.com), which re-routes the erotic artistic legacy of (pre)colonial South Asian courtesans through internet technologies, translating them into the specifics of our contemporary geographic locales. The evening also features an improvisational score created by Carol McDowell especially for the performers.

http:// www.postnatyam.net

http:// www.cynthialinglee.com


Living Matter, Performance #1
Friday - Sunday, October 2-4, 2009
4am - 6pm
72-hour solo durational performance
viewable to the public Fri Oct 2 - Sun Oct 4, 12-5p


In her solo performance, "Living Matter," Mariel Carranza will be confined to the gallery space for 72 hours, kneading dough, stretching it, pressing it, warming it, and manipulating it until it is elastic and smooth, then throwing it against the walls. "Living Matter, Performance #1" is a study in the transfer of energy from one physical system to another and the degree to which a body is moved toward the force of the transfer, both in reality, in the concrete sense of experience, and in the abstract.

Mariel Carranza was born in Peru. She received her MFA in sculpture from UCLA. Notable performances include: "Nidje Israel", Mexico City DF, "Blank Space" at Irrational Exhibit 7, Track 16, LA, "Cage Free Born Free" at Highways, LA, "Ungrounded", Glasgow, Scotland, "Offering", Depicting Action, An International Exhibition of Time Based Art, 18th Street Art Center, Santa Monica, and "Corners” at Crazy Space, Santa Monica, "Lemon Piece" at "Performance Art Happening," and "Full Nelson" at Del Mar Theater, Los Angeles.
Links: http://marielcarranza.com/index.htm

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