(w/ Yvonne Austen) Shedhalle, Zürich, Switzerland, 7/26/91
This was the first day of a two-day series of performances in the Shedhalle space, which was the primary venue for the Feed-Back-and-Forth project organized by M. Vänci Stirnemann & featuring more than a dozen performance artists from Switzerland, Canada, Spain, the UK & me.
It was only a week since our group's big blowout & split at the Helmhaus performance, so tensions were still high but we were all attempting to work together as well as possible to make something professional for Shedhalle & the audience. The group mainly worked in pairs or solo, but a fair amount of thought & planning had gone into choreographing the day's events so that peformances would overlap or be sequenced somewhat logically & hopefully to the benefit of each piece.
Yvonne & I began by standing shoulder-to-shoulder, each of us wearing 7 or 8 white shirts. We'd hand-sew the shoulders & elbows of our top shirts together, then wriggle out of them and sew our next top shirt to that pair. So that after 15-20 minutes, we'd gotten going on a string of connected shirts, kind of like a laundry line. Yvonne was kind of the main pariah in the group by that point & I was surely right behind, all a long story I don;t have time to go into today, but in any case this performance may have been about the bonds one decides to form with other people, the external surfaces of social relations, etc. We may have had as many shirts as people in the FB&F group, but I'm not sure we'd thought it through quite so precisely. Some potatoes we'd put into a pot of water were boiling on a hot plate the entire time we were sewing, but I'm not sure why. Cooking metaphor relating to community? Meal as product? When we were finished sewing our shirts, we took off the last ones & the performance was over.