On "Untitled [Stage]"
I’m unable to attend the opening reception at Gallery 400 tomorrow, as I have to work. So I went to see the show this evening straight from the office. I’ve never studied art, nor am I a critic, but I have a passion for it, and Mark’s output was so relevant and bold and needs to be talked about, forever.
Torch Song: 2012 UIC Art MFA Thesis Exhibition features the work of Mark Aguhar, Sebastian Aguirre, Jon Chambers, and Andrew Mausert-Mooney and my friends in Chances Dances installed Mark’s show — something intense and necessary for them. Missing this was not an option, right? I walked through the entire gallery but was only interested in seeing her stuff. Her show consists of three pencil drawings (one featured on the splash page that I linked to above), a looped DVD reel of three of her performances, including Untitled (1 Story 5 Poems) that she blogged about extensively and a light blue platform in the shape of a triangle: Untitled [Stage] 2012. This last piece is the only one I want to respond to here. It was made posthumously by Mark’s friends Aay and Colin, and it’s completely breathtaking.
As you walk in the gallery, it’s there, a triangular structure in the middle of the larger room, pointing at you, maybe pointing towards the entrance, reminding you of where you enter, and where you leave. Walking up to it, the triangle’s sides remove the first impression of a specific direction, but even the sides could be steps up or down, marking the beginning or end of a performance, or speech. The triangle is lit underneath by a similar shade of light-blue neon light, and in the center, on top, is a translucent circle intersected with a shiny, pristine, mirrored heptagram. The light coming from the circle is blue and pink, and as it fades in and out of the solid wood of the triangle, it provides a color gradient that Mark had used in several previous works. Bright, almost hot pink fading into a vibrant blue - illustrating the fluidity between two colors usually associated with the binary choices children have when picking out clothes or toys. That the triangle is a traditional symbol of queer pride is just the beginning — the pink in this piece is contained within a geometric shape that is an ancient mark of sacred protection, the universal elements, alchemy, philosophy and God-like perfection.
The layers of queer history, societal oppression, traditional podiums for oratory, theater presentation, sacred spaces, ancient symbols, and color theory couldn’t have come together more perfectly than this. The complete and complex beauty envisioned by Mark in this stage is heightened by her absence - a stage like this, heavy with reference and meaning on personal and academic levels, transcends its weight by evoking the grace of heaven. It is perfect in how it coaxes, even dares you have a reason to stand on it and say something, DO something, WERK on something and try to create your own sacred space. It’s stunningly, jaw-droppingly gorgeous. Whatever was to be / could be / should be performed on a stage like this would HAVE to be as urgent as Mark lived her life. To be sure, it would have been.
It still could be, if we keep her in our hearts, our words, and our deeds. I really believe that. I’m still learning from you, Mark.
UIC ACW 2011
Day 01 [be only courageous.]
Day 02 [coffeehouse]
Day 03 [panelists]
Day 04 [stand.]
Driving me crazy!!!!
Well I got the news of my audition for the short film and I didn’t make it, but that;s okay because I have other things coming up. Okay so on to the thing that is driving me crazy; MY CAREER.
I wanted to audition for NYU, but it turns out that might not be happening because of certain reason. I decided and I thought about this for awhile, but I decided finally to apply for UIC (University of Illinois at Chicago) because it is a little cheaper than NYU and also it is a really good school.
I have a problem though, I need to become a resident of Illinois first to pay in-state tuition, which is a lot cheaper than out-of-state. I just need some prayer and positive vibes sent my way.
My mom and I are thinking that I would move there after this semester is done or even before if this semester doesn’t work out for me. I would move out there and find a place to live, with a roommate of course, and find a job to get myself situated out there.
Well that’s all for right now, I really need to get to bed, Good Night.