Back to THE HISTORY OF THE FUTUREFall 1999/ Winter 2000

Friday, November 26, 1999 (day after Thanksgiving) The World's a Stage:
Fiona Templeton, "You the City"; Julie Laffin, "Various States of D(u)ress"; Yvette Helin, "Pedestrian Project"; Andre Stitt, "Witness" akshun.

The Italian Futurists made the world their stage in 1910 when they lugged 800,000 copies of a manifesto berating the past-loving Venetians up the Clock Tower and waited for everyone to emerge from Church. When they threw the manifestoes down on the heads of the faithful, who read that Venice was a sewer of traditionalism and only the future had value, the Venetians claimed it a heresy, because indeed, this important idea had no currency at the time. So the populus stormed up the Clock Tower, the Futurist poets and painters stormed down and in the fistfight that resulted was born performance art. (Or at least this is where I assign the beginning of performance art to be.) And I believe contemporary performance art still exhibits the traces of this event, especially in the work of artists who use the world as a stage for their ideas.


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