Saturday, September 25, 2010

Smashing Papayas

photo by Jeremy
I am still smashing things.
I am still smashing things.

Recently papayas, eggs, those kelp balloon-pods on the beach, and bubble wrap.

I've been trying to understand my compulsion for this kind of destruction, and its expression in an artistic context.

photo by Jeremy

I realized that my hypothesis about my 2-year-old niece applies to me.

She loves to perform "night-night," squealing with joy when I pull up the covers of my bed under her chin, yet going to sleep in her own crib at night seems fraught with anxiety.  She sometimes screams her little head off.

  She also likes to play "fall down," in which she gently lowers herself to to floor, dirt, or sidewalk and calls out "fall down!" with glee. 

 Are you guessing my theory?  Right, she repeatedly performs acts that scare her, exerting conscious control over them during playtime, rehearsing for the real thing.  Like a fire drill.

I keep finding new ways to perform accidents.  Instead of rehearsing, my performances are more ritual reenactments in which I keep trying for a different outcome.

 In my performances no one gets hurt and I can clean everything up by myself if I have to.

Of course it is really amazing when a big group of people spontaneously decides to help me clean up, as happened with the eggs on a street in Barcelona.