Works : Performance and Intervention

BLOOD REVENGE 2

2007

Performed at: “Serious Games,” Exit Art, NY; Red House, Center for Culture and Debate, Sofia

 

In 1972, internationally renown TIME magazine critic Robert Hughes, wrote in his article “The Decline and Fall of the Avant-Garde” the following false statement about the Viennese actionist Rudolph Schwarzkogler:

“[Schwarzkogler is] the Vincent van Gogh of body art [who]….proceeded,
inch by inch, to amputate his own penis, while a photographer recorded
the act as an art event.”

This myth continues, and tells that Schwarzkogler died after this procedure. As a woman who works with her body, I had to “compete” with this “heroic” action during my whole art career. I was often told there is no stronger gesture than an amputation of a penis. Since I couldn’t amputate my penis (I don’t have one), I decided to reenact the performance considering the anatomy of my body. I created a hybrid of art history lecture and a body intervention.

During my historical talk I stitched  up to my belly a beautiful red dildo, using a professional suture kit. I also introduced the audience to the historical fact, that the images that became the source of the myth, are not a documentation of “live performance” called “Aktion 3 and 6,” but staged photography series. I explained that person depicted is not even Schwarzkogler, but his friend Heinz Cibulka and he didn’t die after this photo shoot. Then I asked people to take photos and imitate Schwarzkogler’s compositions that produced this myth. The public became a mythology producer. There is a new “myth” now about a female artist from Bulgaria, who amputated her own penis inch by inch live on camera and overcame Schwarzkogler’s fakery.

Available as:  SERIES OF THREE COLOR PHOTOGRAPHS, MOUNTED ON WOOD, DIMENSIONS VARIABLE