Saturday, January 31, 2009

excerpt from interview

M: I am aware that your 2007 exhibition at _________ was criticized for being overly diaristic...

K: It was. Yes.

M: So... Do you not see that as being problematic?

K: Well, I mean, yes and no. The self that gets created to put into drawing or video, writing, performance, etc, you know, ... it is a Self that is highly formalized...

M: You mean fictionalized?

K: Well, I guess in a sense. I actually did mean formalized.. Using one's self in their practice always brings up the question about where the line between fiction and reality is. Memory, you know, becomes quite evidently subjective...

M: It seems that you run the risk of being seen as being victimizing by striving to make your self so vulnerable... and/or you could be seen as being quite narcissistic for dwelling so much on your feelings and experiences.

K: I know.

M: Is that a concern?

K: No. I feel that there is a real need to not shy away from being able to relate to people on a human level; why can't I use the medium of performance to express these human experiences?

M: Why performance, then? Why not something that allows to to have it to be more to do with The Human Experience and less about you?

K: Suppose I like the range of challenges that are particular to performance as a genre. Having grown up doing a lot of theater, it was sort of weird in grad school to feel this pressure to make work that is highly formalized and has a conceptual edge... There is this assumption that in doing so, you will be at a safe distance from making work that is drama and will be able to eek out a Truth...a reflection of your authentic self... What happens when you blur the line and at times lose sight of where that line is?

M: So you're saying you don't know what you really feel even though you make work that is highly emotional and very personal seeming?

K: Don't we all go through processes of trying on different reactions to things to see what fits?

M: Some people might see that as being kind of hasty or fickle, and then you say that you don't actually feel the feelings that you perform--so you're projecting a persona that is hasty, fickle, and which lacks genuineness?

K: I feel that there is a lot to be learned from allowing room for having more than one thing going on at any given time. In the space of a performance piece, there is more room for that than most of us are permitted in our real, everyday lives.

M: We were talking earlier about Gilbert and George, who showed at the De Young last year... What do you think about what goes on in their "real, everyday lives" in terms of emotional ambiguity or authenticity?

K: That is a question I think about every day.