BS"D
self portrait #1: reverence

Video installation, 3 channel, 9min and looped. 2001.

Based on a performance intervention originally performed in May 2000 at the Art Institute of Chicago and May 2001 as performance with live feed at Links Hall in 'Performing the Problematic' curated by Barbara De Genevieve and Sheelah Murthy.

For the purposes of this discussion, I have studied text from Torah that references a conceptual space that is sacred. This is not a location determined by degrees of longitude and latitude, but a four-dimensional moment.

~har hakodesh, place of assembly, the place to which all eyes are raised, the place to which all hearts are turned

~Makom [a name of God meaning "place"]

~Abram and Soreh are told: "Go from your house and from your kindred, and from your fathers house to the place that I will show you".

~Petach Eynayim (the crossroads, where Tamar waits for Judah, and the "place of open eyes").

The text chanted is Yedid Nefesh, a prayer-poem by one of the great Kabbalists of sixteenth-century Tsfat, R' Eliezer Azikri. This text, for the poets physical and passionate expression of yearning for the Place, the Moment, is read by some as an expression of an ecstasy that is particularly homoerotic. I am fascinated by the complex power dynamics of implied age difference between the subjects.
Reverence conflates this concept with gay space.

I have described
the piece as
a self-portrait:
I am the man,
I am the boy,
I am the stall.
The piece began
as a performance interrogating what others have found in me exotic, simultaneous to an exploration of what fraternal space might mean for me.