This performance/interactive art piece will use a social variant of the surrealist method of automatism to map the interaction between the artist and passer by. Dressed as a slightly eccentric Edwardian tea drinker and seated at a table in a coffee shop, I will offer tea or coffee to participants. The beverages will be served out a teapots and especially selected it's tendency to drip, over sheets of handmade paper. I will begin conversations with passers by through the use of cards with discussion topics. As the discussions progress, drip patterns and cup rings will be cast on the table's surface. Once enough information has been imprinted for a reading, the given sheet of paper will be set aside and replaced.
Between visitors, I will hand sew the discarded sheets, transforming the drip patterns into continents and the cup rings into compass roses. In such a way, maps of the social space established between the artist and visitors will be created. Participants will be welcomed to view the completed maps online as well as at an upcoming exhibition at Blink Gallery at the end of August.
On October 17th the Cake Girls (Karina Bergmans and yours truly) went to the Toronto Alternative Fashion Week. Though we were initially concerned our goofy burlesque chique might not be fully appreciated by the high fashion world, Karina was right, everybody loves cake. Its no surprise that my three year old niece dances for joy everytime a birthday cake is carried out but did you know that fashion models are as disapointed as the next girl when confronted with fake cupcakes?
A group of high school girls at the Alternative Fashion Show asked us our inspiration, perhaps aspiring to become living pastry themselves after graduation. Its a good question really; why play the part of an MC at an event where you are also the main dish? Well after much ponderence I've decided..when you are the sacred feast you might as well be the high priestess too...
Both Karina and I share an interest in Cake and Ritual. Food, music, good company and fire - the key elements are all there. I found myself drawing a link between birthday cake and the shared ingestion of animal sacrifice on CBC Radio. Yikes!
Our original interest in the subject of cake seems to have come from different directions however...
Karina's interest in cake stems from a playful interest in the desire and excitement which surounds it.
"Cake is a standard
food item for a celebration. People get
excited about cake; whether it is a birthday party, a wedding, an office party,
or another event, bringing out the cake is the headliner to the occasion. It could be stated that Cake has become the
new sacrament in our secular world. There is procedure and protocol related to Cake eating, along with songs
(Happy Birthday), and ritual (cutting of cake at a wedding). Cake can also be a temptation. There is an element of the forbidden in
enjoying cake, especially in this era of mad diets, waistline watching and the
pursuit of the physical ideal."
The game of fake and real has been going for quite some time...
"On the occasions
that I have served one of my Cakes, there
has been much excitement and anticipation. Previous Cake interventions have included: a summer BBQ, a friends
birthday brunch, a dim sum, an Art Fair
and a New Years Eve party. I even skated with cake along the canal. At each of these events, there has been a
lot of eagerness to consume the cake. It was in those instants, that I managed to conjure the perfect
temptation. I have created a likeness
to the real entity of cake and it is the audience’s normal sensory input that
is unable to distinguish the difference. The art of the fake cake is in the creation of desire and craving in a
Julia Vanhon of Pukka loved the cake show enough to host the
performance but did you know she's allergic to the desert in question? Perhaps the cake show was an opportunity to enjoy cake vicariously...
My own inspiration for the cake show developed gradually as well...
While shopping for laces and ruffles to detail an earlier mixed media
work I was struck by their similarity to cake toppings. Frosting acts as a
cake’s clothing, dressing it up for events both formal and informal. Many
outfits, like icing, are only worn once, such as wedding, bride’s maid or first
communion dresses. The only frosting job that is worn as a
literal garment, however, is the cake a stripper jumps out of at a bachelor
party. “She Forgot to Jump Out of the Cake” a two dimensional
mixed media piece, is the seminal work in my tongue in cheek exploration of the
theme of the edible woman.
Show” continues the artistic examination of frocks and food. While other
artists, like Jana Sterbak, have already made the comparison between clothing,
food and flesh, I would assert, that as women’s place in society continues to
evolve, we must be aware of when we are happily complicit in our sexual
identities and when we are playing a mating game we feel we cannot sit out.
When do we feel devoured?
When do we enjoy the game of dress up and feel on
equal or even higher footing? My performance set to the tune of If
I'd a Known You Were Coming could be the routine of either a candy gram or
an exotic dancer. The classic song is both sweet and ironic.
remains a key sociological concern in the applied arts. In societies where
masks and costumes are a regular part of community ritual, clothing has a
well-recognised significance. In a time and place where special garb is
frequently considered “just frosting” there is often more going on than we
realise in the act of donning apparel.
Now if your still reading why not leave a comment? Cake and frocks play a part in everyones life. Whats your take on cake?