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Contents for March 11, 2019

Carolee Schneemann, FF Alumn, In Memoriam

The New York Times
Carolee Schneemann, Visionary Feminist Performance Artist, Dies at 79
by Holland Cotter
March 10, 2019

Carolee Schneemann, a prime mover of performance art, a feminist visionary and one of the most influential artists of the late 20th century, died on Wednesday at her home in New Paltz, N.Y. She was 79.

The cause was breast cancer, said Wendy Olsoff, co-founder of the gallery P.P.O.W., which, along with Galerie LeLong, represented Ms. Schneemann in New York. She had lived with the disease for more than two decades.

Ms. Schneemann found instant notoriety early on. In 1964, in Paris and New York, she staged an epochal performance event titled "Meat Joy." Set to a pop-score composed by her husband then, the avant-garde composer James Tenney, the work had the appearance of an orgiastic free-for-all, with men and women, including the artist, rolling around on the floor in bikini briefs slathering each other with blood-red paint and clutching dead fish and chickens.

At regular intervals from 1963 to 1967, Ms. Schneemann and Mr. Tenney filmed themselves having sex. She then edited the footage into a film called "Fuses," in which the couple are seen in close-up in their darkened bedroom - they shot their lovemaking by passing small cameras back and forth - with a rural landscape of changing seasons visible through a window.

Most radically, the entire film is framed as if seen through the eyes of an observant but unjudging third party, a feline named Kitch, the first of several "muse cats" that Ms. Schneemann bonded with and included in her art over the years.

For the startling 1975 performance piece "Interior Scroll," Ms. Schneemann stood nude on a table, posing like a studio model, while reading from a book of her collected writings titled "Cezanne, She Was a Great Painter." The writings included a litany of misogynistic reactions a female artist could expect to encounter in her career, like these:

to have your brain picked
to have the pickings misunderstood
to be mistreated whether your success
increases or decreases
if you are a woman (and things are not utterly changed)
they will almost never believe you really did it
(what you did do)
they will patronize you humor you
try to sleep with you want you to transform them
with your energy

She then put the book down and slowly extracted a narrow strip of typewritten paper from her vagina, reading aloud the text on the scroll as it emerged. The words included a direct address to a contemporary filmmaker and theorist - female, as it happened - who had dismissed her work as "diaristic indulgence."

Ms. Schneemann encountered critical resistance regularly, often from what seemed to be conflicting directions. Some feminists viewed her body-positive, pro-sensual art as exploitative, not as a bold assertion of female agency. In contrast, in 1969, when she screened "Fuses" at the Cannes Film Festival, an audience made up almost exclusively of male critics greeted it with anger: The film, it seemed, wasn't pornographic enough for them. They saw it as a tease.

Carolee Schneemann was born on Oct. 12, 1939, into a middle-class family in Fox Chase, Pa., then a rural neighborhood of Philadelphia. Her father was a country doctor. She remembered poring over his anatomy books when she was very young.

"There was always physicality around us," she said in an interview, "leaking, spilling out of boundaries, wounded farmers with bleeding limbs, hemorrhages, infections. No fantasy of the sanitized body in this household."

Ms. Schneemann had an early interest in art and the natural world, and in 1955, over her family's objections, she entered Bard College, in the Hudson Valley, on a full scholarship to study painting. There she ran into problems. The all-male studio faculty was primarily interested in having her pose for them. When, on her own initiative, she produced nude-self-portraits, she was expelled for a year on grounds of, as she put it, "moral turpitude."

The punitive exile - she later returned to earn a degree - proved fortunate. She enrolled in the art program at Columbia University, where she met Mr. Tenney. She continued to paint in a gestural style that borrowed something from Cezanne and a lot from Abstract Expressionists like Arshile Gorky and Willem de Kooning. In her paintings of the 1950s, landscapes and bodies share a charge of organic energy. A nude portrait of Mr. Tenney could be mistaken for a tangle of tree limbs, or a garden blooming. The couple divorced in 1968.

At the time, the high-minded anguish attributed to Abstract Expressionism had little appeal for her. What mattered in "action painting" was action, she thought - evidence of bodily motion. She took this aesthetic beyond wielding brushes to adding found matter to the surfaces of her canvases, then cutting them up and adding them to three-dimensional constructions, some with motorized components.

By the 1960s, these assemblages had become environments against which, and within which, she performed, smearing her nude body with paint and grease and surrounding it with props: live snakes, shattered glass, a cow skull. Such performances were captured in a photographic series titled "Eye Body: 36 Transformative Actions for Camera." Shot by the Icelandic Pop artist Erró, they suggest erotic archaic rituals amplified by a Dadaist wit.

"In 1963, to use my body as an extension of my painting-constructions," she later said, "was to challenge and threaten the psychic territorial power lines by which women were admitted to the Art Stud Club."

It was a short, logical step from these studio solos into a theater. Ms. Schneemann made the transition as a founding member of Judson Dance Theater, along with the choreographer-performers Deborah Hay and Yvonne Rainer and the artist Robert Morris.

In the Judson aesthetic, everyday actions - walking, running, lovemaking - had expressive dimensions. "Meat Joy" was a natural, if operatically scaled, product of its spirit, and it was carefully choreographed. Ms. Schneemann had plotted its movements in preliminary drawings.

If "Meat Joy" reflected the liberationist spirit of its day, other work tapped into its dark political realities, specifically the war in Vietnam. In her 1965 "Viet-Flakes," a video camera scans newspaper clippings of battlefield atrocities as if from the perspective of a marauding fighter plane. Two years later, she incorporated the film into a monumental stage piece called "Snows," in which performers, taking directions from the audience, enacted sculptural tableaus derived from war pictures.

Just as Ms. Schneemann was forthright in advocating for self-determined pleasure, she was bold in confronting transience and mortality. A 1994-95 installation, "Mortal Coils," was a multimedia memorial to 17 friends who had died. "Terminal Velocity," in 2001, was based on enlarged newspaper photographs of people falling from the doomed World Trade Center towers on Sept. 11 that year. (She took critical heat for using these images so soon after 9/11.) In a multimedia installation called "Known/Unknown: Plague Column" (1995/96), shown at P.P.O.W., she focused on her own experience with breast cancer.

And she entered territories where few other artists were venturing, like interspecies communication. A video titled "Kitch's Last Meal" (1973-78) is a five-hour gesture of mourning for the loss of a beloved companion. A 2008 video, "Infinity Kisses - the Movie," in which Ms. Schneemann shares kisses with Kitch's feline successors, may be her most unguardedly sensual work.

In a half-century career of productivity - encompassing painting, sculpture, collage, drawing, bookmaking, photography, performance, installation, film and writing - Ms. Schneemann found little support in a mainstream art world.

In the 1960s and 1970s, she had no gallery representation. She had to wait until 1996 for a modest museum survey: "Carolee Schneemann: Up to and Including Her Limits," organized by Dan Cameron at the New Museum in Manhattan. (The show got its title from an installation in which she suspended herself in a tree-surgeon's halter and drew on the surrounding walls, converting her body into a mark-making utensil.)

Ms. Schneemann, who lived in the Springtown section of New Paltz, is survived by a brother and sister.

In 1999, she wrote to the MacArthur Foundation: "I am not the only woman artist with a distinguished history who has no way to sustain her work, nor provide for her future. I'm enclosing a bibliography as well as an exhibition and lecture sheet to clarify this extremely paradoxical history, the punishing facts of this mythic 'career.' "

But in the last few years she began to be acknowledged as the history-shaper she was. In 2015, the Museum der Moderne Salzburg in Austria organized a near-comprehensive career retrospective, which later traveled to MoMA PS1 in Queens. In 2017, she took the international spotlight when she was awarded the Golden Lion for lifetime achievement at the Venice Biennale.

Most important was the growing recognition of her influence on high-profile younger figures like Marina Abramovic, Matthew Barney and Pipilotti Rist, and, directly or indirectly, on newer generations of artists who take the body, sexuality and gender as their brief. A born collaborator, Ms. Schneemann was well known for her generosity to fellow artists, and for her tireless drive to keep working despite "every sort of conceivable resistance."

"Death is greedy," she wrote near the end of last year, "So on we go, with all the love and appreciation we can express to each other."

(c) 2019 The New York Times Company



1. Stephanie Brody-Lederman, FF Alumn, at the University of Connecticut, Stamford, thru April 11

Stephanie Brody-Lederman in National Encaustic Exhibition at the University of Connecticut, Stamford The dates of the show are March 4-April 11, 2019 and the reception is March 14th 5:30-8pm. The curator is Dorothea Osborn



2. Alvin Eng, FF Alumn, at Museum of Chinese in America, Manhattan, March 14

Hello Again,

Excited to share that I will be participating in NüVoices of the Diaspora: An Evening of Storytelling at the Museum of Chinese in America (MOCA), 215 Centre St (betw. Grand & Howard Sts.), NYC, on Thursday, March 14, 6:30-8pm.

I will be reading from my...just about completed new work, Our Laundry, Our Town: A Memoir Travelogue through Chinese America. This collection of auto-ethnographic prose portraits also draws on my solo plays, The Last Emperor of Flushing, The Flushing Cycle and More Stories from the Pagan Pagoda.

Also on the bill are Karoline Kan, Angel Yau and my dear friend, Muna Tseng! If you're in town and free, I hope you can join us! The Nu Voices announcement follows and here are links to more event and ticket information.




Happy Almost Spring!

NüVoices of the Diaspora is an evening filled with storytelling by artists and by the community, headlined by both young and veteran luminaries of Asian American writing and performance art. Muna Tseng, Alvin Eng, Karoline Kan, and Angel Yau will each present from their oeuvre varying from a reading, spoken word, video and music - dedicated to the theme of the evening: NüVoices of the Diaspora. Karoline, a writer born in Tianjin and living in Beijing, will be providing a counterpoint to the diaspora experiences with a reading from Under Red Skies, the first English-language memoir from a Chinese millennial to be published in America.

As part of the evening we invite the audience to bring along their own poems or brief excerpts of writing, old or new, fiction or non-fiction, to share in the last half hour of the program. There is no obligation to bring anything, however, and we are looking forward to an incredible evening filled with stories and creativity.

MOCA (Museum of Chinese in America) charges $15 for events, which includes wine and museum admission. Event free for MOCA members. Link below re-directs to MOCA's public programme platform. Tickets will also be available at the door... if we don't sell out. PURCHASE TICKETS!

NüVoices is an international editorial collective of writers, journalists, translators researchers, artists and supporters who celebrate the creative work of women who work on subjects related to China and the greater diaspora. The group started when a group of female journalists and friends felt frustrated that sources and 'experts' on China highlighted in media were predominantly men, and that there was a prevalence of 'manels' on China. In response we started a directory of nearly 500 female experts on Greater China, which has significantly boosted women and minority representation in media stories and conference programming. We are also working on a print anthology to showcase the diverse creative work of women on China. NüVoices now has volunteer-driven chapters around the world, including in Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, Washington D.C., Berlin, London and New York. We are an inclusive group and welcome all supporters of all genders.

Alvin Eng is a native NYC playwright, performer and educator. He will be sharing stories from "Our Laundry, Our Town: A Memoir Travelogue Through Chinese America." This is a prose expansion of his one-person show, "The Last Emperor of Flushing," which he has performed throughout the United States as well as in his family's ancestral province of Guangdong, China. Eng is also the author and editor of the oral history/play anthology, "Tokens? The NYC Asian American Experience on Stage" that has been assigned in college courses in the U.S., Hong Kong and China.

Karoline Kan is a former New York Times reporter who writes about millennial life and politics in China. She's currently an editor at China Dialogue. She lives in Beijing. Karoline will be reading from her new book, Under Red Skies, which tells the stories of three generations of women in her family and "how they navigated their way in a country beset by poverty and often-violent political unrest. As the Kans move from quiet villages to crowded towns and through the urban streets of Beijing in search of a better way of life, they are forced to confront the past and break the chains of tradition, especially those forced on women."

Muna Tseng, born in Hong Kong, lives and works in New York since 1977, is an acclaimed choreographer, performer, teacher, founder and Artistic Director of Muna Tseng Dance Projects Inc., which has produced over 50 original productions performed internationally. She has collaborated with some of the world's leading artists in music, theater and design, notably Chinese contemporary artists such as Tan Dun, David Henry Hwang, Bright Sheng, Ping Chong and Ong Keng Sen. Muna Tseng has won numerous awards including a "Bessies" (New York Dance and performance Award), repeat choreographic fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, New York State Council on the Arts, and New York Foundation for the Arts. She also oversees the Estate Archive of Tseng Kwong Chi, a vast archive of her late brother's conceptual performative photographs, the famous "East Meets West" self-portraits series (1979-1989) and his documentation of New York's East Village art scene and art stars of the 1980's such as Warhol, Haring, Basquiat, Scharf in exhibitions and publications world-wide.

Angel Yau is a comedic storyteller, sketch performer and filmmaker based out of Queens, New York. She is part of the sketch group AzN PoP! who performed at Joe's Pub and various festivals. She is also a sketch actor at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. Her comedic performances have been apart of various comedy festivals, SF Sketchfest, Women in Comedy, Solocom, etc. She has told stories on Risk!, Mortified! and Story Collider podcasts. She started An Asian American Film Thing which feature Asian-American filmmakers usually taken place at Caveat. Her passion is creating auto-biographical stop-motion animations about her lonely and awkward childhood.



3. Lois Weaver, FF Alumn, wins The Hawking Award for Developed Understanding of Public Engagement

Lois wins The Hawking Award for
Developed Understanding of
Public Engagement!

The Hawking Award for Developed Understanding of Public Engagement is named for Lucy Hawking, novelist and daughter of Stephen Hawking. This award reflects Lucy's qualities of reflexive, cooperative working, and her understanding of how to bring together research and engagement. It is given to an individual to acknowledge their critical thinking in the field of public engagement.

This comes at a great time for Lois as she continues her working on her Recipes for Public Conversations during her Public Engagement Fellowship at Wellcome Trust and begins to look at more ways we can communicate and connect with one another in increasingly challenging times.

She wants you to know that she feels, "honored to receive this award and delighted to be in the company of such good people who do the good work of caring, creating, and conversing with the public."

Huge congratulations to Lois!

What else is new with Split Britches?

Lois has been mentoring a group of artists from across the UK in Peterborough with Metal Culture this week alongside artist and friend, Scottee. The aim of the LAB has been to 'create a supportive and radicalised space to think the unthinkable, get angry, make mess and mistakes, and explore strategies for new artworks, interventions and ways of being.'

We've all been resting and resetting (and defrosting!) after a wonderful five weeks at Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis. We're going to let you know about the things we got up to very soon.

Lois and Peggy are heading to Ithaca to take part in a symposium hosted by Cornell Performing & Media Arts - PMA called Feminist Directions: Performance, Power, and Leadership and they're really looking forward to it.

Lois and Peggy are soon to continue working on their new performance during UK-based residencies over the coming months at Metal Culture in Peterborugh and at Attenborough Centre for the Creative Arts / University of Sussex and they're so excited to return to Peterborough and Falmer.

Lois and Peggy will be facilitating Manchester Sexuality Summer School this year and they're so happy to be returning! Register now to take part.

Stay tuned for more updates from us for the spring, summer and beyond! Thanks as ever for your support.



4. Gülsen Calik, FF Alumn, at Williamsburg Art and Historical Center, Brooklyn, thru April 7

Dear Friends,

I'm in a group show curated by Yuko Nii, Director and Founder of the Williamsburg Art and Historical Center. The show celebrates innovative women artists and is part of the gallery's Women's History Month (March) activities.

I have 9 works in the show; four of my artist books, a few repaired eggs from my "Egg Mending" series, and some of my more recent work, including "The Museum of Heart", "Ionized Nature" and "Beggll".

The exhibition goes on through April 7, 2019. The closest subways are the L train to Bedford Station or the J or M train to Marcy Avenue. You have to walk to Broadway from Bedford Avenue (11 blocks) or 8 blocks along Broadway to 135 Broadway. The building is on the corner of Broadway and Bedford Streets in Brooklyn and the entrance is on Bedford Street.
I hope you can come!

Gülsen Calik

Williamsburg Art & Historical Center
135 Broadway, Brooklyn, NY 11211
718 486 6012 or 718 486 7372



5. Richard H. Alpert, FF Alumn, now online at youtube.com/watch?v=eFOEtOL6BmE

Attached please find information about upcoming screenings of my new video,
AVE, variation #7.



Richard H. Alpert



6. John Held, Jr., FF Alumn, at Live Worms Gallery, San Francisco, CA, opening Mar 13

San Francisco Society of Independent Artists Exhibition
At Live Worms Gallery
1345 Grant Street
North Beach, San Francisco
March 13, 2019
6-8 pm

In the spirit of the original SIA
Society of Independent Artists
A no jury exhibition of works on
paper by the artist members
of the San Francisco SIA

(SIA is a division of MOCA, Museum of Conceptual Art 1970-1984)

Tom Marioni, Dan Max, Robert Bechtle, Paul Kos, Peter Gutkin, Mark Van Proyan, John Held, Jr., Lorna, K., Andrew McClintock, Lisa Blatt, David Joenes, Amir Esfahani, Cheryl Meeker, Frances Valesco, Isabelle Sorrell, Diana Roby, John Moore, Mike Dyar, Susan Backman, Flicka McGurrin, Mary Ijichi, Kent Roberts, Richard Beggs, Ishan Clemenco, Mari Andrews, Edward Stanton, Chris Felver, Susan Middleton, Susan Magnus, Michael Brennan, Gregory Edwards, Manuel Lucero, David Ng.



7. Liz Phillips, FF Alumn, at Queens Museum, Flushing Meadows Park, April 12-13

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

I would love see you at these performances at the Queens Museum. They are are great opportunity to spend time in our installation "Relative Fields in a Garden", a collaboration with Liz Phillips that I am extremely proud of, and would love to spend more time in, seeing and hearing with the audience. There will be a twenty minute break in between two thirty minute performances on both April 12th and 13th so that people will have more time to listen. We feel extremely lucky to be working with virtuoso improvisers Earl Howard and Cynthia Koppe on this project. "Relative Fields in a Garden" will be on view until August 2019.


Relative Fields in Motion: A Collaborative Improvisation
April 12, 7:30pm
April 13, 1:30pm

This improvised sound and dance performance is organized in conjunction with the site-specific installation, Relative Fields in Garden (2018). The first collaboration between portraitist Heidi Howard and her mother, pioneering interactive sound sculptor Liz Phillips, the work comprises a year-long commission for the Queens Museum's Large Wall series for women-identified artists. Relative Fields in Motion will extend Howard and Phillips' exploration of the politics of relation and simultaneity found in the domestic sphere of the garden, and further activate their work's synaesthetic interplay between sound, image, and movement.

Directed by Howard, the performance combines saxophone by her father, virtuoso composer and performer Earl Howard with movement by dancer Cynthia Koppe, in an expanded sound installation by Phillips including ultrasonic sensor lines. As Koppe explores the brushing, dripping, slapping and layering of Howard's painted actions, her gestures will be processed through Phillips' installation to modulate, resonate, and sustain sounds, creating a live-responsive mix with the field recordings of bees, leaves, birds, trains and water that loop through the twenty speaker objects in the hundred-foot-long soundscape.
Howard's saxophone improvisation will draw from real-time observations of the varying arrangement, as well as his intimate knowledge of the source recordings from his and Phillips' Sunnyside, Queens garden. His live response will bring further form to this range of coincidental interactions produced among each artist's investigation and the audience's experience, merging the context of a private, urban garden with that of an interior public space, in one dynamic and interactive event.

Cynthia Koppe is a New York based dancer. Born in Singapore, she holds a BA from Cornell University in Sociology and Dance. She has worked with Liz Santoro and Pierre Godard since 2008 and continues to work with their Paris-based company, Le Principe d'Incertitude. Cynthia was a member of Shen Wei Dance Arts from 2009-2016, helping to originate roles as well as performing repertory. She has also worked with Ellis Wood, Bill Young, Ryan McNamara, Sam Roeck, Adam Weinert and Christopher Williams, and was a reperformer in Marina Abramovic's 2010 MoMA Retrospective. In addition to dancing, Cynthia teaches embodied movement through Pilates and Yoga.

Heidi Howard (b.1986, New York, NY) has exhibited her work at Nancy Margolis Gallery, New York, NY (2017, 2016, 2015), Gaa Gallery, Provincetown, MA and Cologne, Germany (2018, 2017), The Hunterdon Museum of Art, Clinton, NJ (2017), James Cohan Gallery, New York, NY (2016) and many more. She has been an artist in residence at Palazzo Monti (2018), Byrdcliffe (2014) and the Vermont Studio Center (2011). She received her BA from Sarah Lawrence College and her MFA from Columbia University. She lives and works in Queens, New York.

Liz Phillips (b. 1951, Jersey City, NJ) studied at Bennington College and received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 1986. She has been making interactive sound installations for over four decades at venues such as Harvestworks on Governors Island, NY (2017); Creative Time (1981,2001); Lincoln Center, New York, NY (2002, 2001); the Jewish Museum, New York, NY (2002); Ars Electronica, Linz, Austria (1991, 1988); the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, NY (1988, 1985); and the Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands (1978) and many more.

Earl Howard (b. 1951, Los Angeles, CA) is an American avant-garde composer, arranger, saxophonist, synthesizer player and multi-instrumentalist. Howard is one of the pioneers of what is called "new" music. He has received numerous awards including, a Guggenheim Fellowship (2011), a grant from Harvard's the Fromm Foundation, a Regents Fellowship at University of California, San Diego, and three New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowships. In 2004 His first sound installation was commissioned for the Tiffany Collection at the Queens Museum of Art. Howard has also produced soundtracks for video artists including Nam June Paik and Mary Lucier.

Relative Fields in Motion is made possible, in part, by the Queens Council on the Arts with public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. Support for Relative Fields in a Garden, 2018 is provided by Agnes Gund. The Large Wall series at Queens Museum is supported by The Ferriday Fund Charitable Trust. Relative Fields in a Garden was commissioned in conjunction with the exhibition, Queens International 2018: Volumes (October 7, 2018 - February 24, 2019). QI 2018 is made possible in part by support from the National Endowment for the Arts and the American Chai Trust. Exhibitions at the Queens Museum receive significant support from Ford Foundation. Major funding for the Queens Museum is generously provided by the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, Lambent Foundation, Booth Ferris Foundation, and the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Inc.



8. Jeff McMahon, FF Alumn, at Changing Hands Bookstore, Phoenix, AZ, March 29

Jeff McMahon performs/reads from his recent book SIX MONOLOGUES 1990-2007 (NoPassport Press 2018), incorporating some of his students from Arizona State University. Changing Hands Bookstore/Phoenix, 300 W Camelback Rd, Phoenix, AZ, Friday March 29 at 7pm. https://www.changinghands.com/changinghandsphoenix
www.nopassport.org/press www.jeffmcmahonprojects.net and take a look at Jacki Apple's review of the book https://fabrikmagazine.com/performing-language-from-stage-to-page/



Goings On is compiled weekly by Harley Spiller