South African performance artist Steven Cohen is currently on trial in Paris for a piece of he performed last year in front of the Eiffel Tower. Performance art as a medium is known for being edgy and pushing boundaries, but French authorities think Cohen took it a little too far when, dressed in a corset, platform shoes, and feather headdress, he put a live rooster on a makeshift leash and attached it to his penis. Yes, he walked a cock with his cock. Keep reading »
When I first heard the term “vaginal knitting,” I assumed it meant knitting with your pubic hair. [Really? I assumed it meant knitting things that look like vaginas. -- Amelia] But no. Vaginal knitting is inserting a skein of wool into your vulva and knitting with it!
Whoa. Crafting just went to a whole new level. Keep reading »
Performance artists do a lot of wild, crazy, bold things to get attention and make a statement, but this story might take the case. On Sunday, Russian performance artist Pyotr Pavlensky stripped naked in the middle of Moscow’s Red Square and nailed his scrotum to the cobblestone street. He explained — in between wailing in pain, I imagine — that the protest was his response to Russia’s descent into a “police state.” Sunday was Police Day in Russia, which celebrates the country’s law enforcement. Clearly, Pavlensky is not a fan of the holiday. He went on in a statement: Keep reading »
There’s a stigma around virginity, so gay college student Clayton Pettet, 19, is doing his part by having anal sex inside an art gallery in front of a live audience on January 25th. Pettet’s performance art will be called “Art School Stole My Virginity” and will include first-time butt sex with a friend and then a chat with the gallery patrons about what they thought of the performance. All this will then be graded, presumably, for London’s Central Saint Martin’s art school. Methinks he is totally overestimating his ability to have anal sex to completion on the first try; his “once-in-a-lifetime performance” might need a couple tries.
Well, at least they are having safe sex. Carry on. [Queerty] [Image of monkeys via Shutterstock]
Sue Austin is a performance and installation artist based in the UK. She has been wheelchair-bound since 1996, and dedicated her artistic work to “finding ways to understand and represent my embodied experience as a wheelchair user.” Most recently this goal has led her to team with scientists and diving experts to create a self-propelled underwater wheelchair. Using fins and a propeller, Austin is able to steer the machine with her feet and navigate a beautiful underwater world that was previously off-limits. Seeing her move through the water with ease and grace is both unexpected and powerful. Check out the video to see for yourself. [YouTube via Smithsonian]
I love me some good performance art involving food products. In the tradition of Karen Finley (the performance artist most well known for shoving a yam up her ass on stage), Melati Suryodarmo experimented with butter. In her performance piece called “EXERGIE — Butter Dance,” the Indonesian-born performance artist (who lives and works in Germany) became one with 20 blocks butter. Swaying to beat of drums in her LBD and black stiletto heels, she stomps, slips, falls and rolls in the butter. Then she gets up and does it all over again. It looks both oddly fun and extremely painful, kind of how I look when I roller skate. As for the deeper meaning of this butter dance: “Exergie” is a German word that translates to activate or exercise. Interpretations? [The Huffington Post]
I was just about to forgive James Franco for signing on to appear in 20 episodes of “General Hospital” and calling it “performance art,” when I caught wind of his latest project. In his downtime from being a beat poet (“Howl”) and cutting off his arm (“127 Hours”), he has been hard at work on an adaptation of the late-’70s television show “Three’s Company.” Keep reading »
We were all scratching our heads in confusion when James Franco announced that he would be appearing on the soap opera “General Hospital.” But would I have called his decision performance art? Not so much. According to James, however, that’s exactly what it is. “I finally took the plunge and experimented with [performance art] myself when I signed on to appear on 20 episodes of ‘General Hospital’ as the bad-boy artist ‘Franco, just Franco,’” he says about his visionary concept in an op-ed in The Wall Street Journal this weekend. So his film career isn’t in trouble, OK? In addition to the 20 episodes on the show, there is a piece de resistance to Franco’s “General Hospital” performance—he will film a final scene in a museum. Edgy. But seriously … why? Keep reading »
Writers often turn their relationships — failed and successful — into stories and novels. But they’re not the only creative types spinning exes into gold. Recently, a few visual and performance artists have used dating and breakups as a starting point for their work. At least some people are finding uses for their relationship failures. We can’t seem to figure out what to do with our brokenheart. Keep reading »