adrian piper, catalysis VI (new york, 1970 performance)
“Piper’s Catalysis was a series of conceptual performances in Manhattan that violated social norms of public behaviour. Photographs document the artist bearing a WET PAINT sign in a crowded street, stuffing her mouth with a towel on public transportation, wearing smelly clothes inside a store, and playing a recording of belching sounds inside a library. Piper never announced that she was performing; unlike televised pranks, the interventions offered no moment of revelation for the strangers who witnessed her behaviour. By escaping the confines of the art context, Piper risked appearing repellent, if not crazy. Acting as a catalytic agent for chance reactions, she dissolved the boundary between art and life.”
"We may never touch queerness, but we can feel it as the warm illumination of a horizon imbued with potentiality…an ideality that can be distilled from the past and used to imagine a future. The future is queerness’ domain. Queerness is a structuring and educated mode of desiring that allows us to see the future beyond the quagmire of the present. The here and now is a prison house. We must strive, in the face of the here and now’s totalizing rendering of reality, to think and feel a then and there. Some will say that all we have are the pleasures of the moment, but we must never settle for that minimal transport; we must dream and enact new and better pleasures, other ways of being in the world, and ultimately new worlds … Queerness is essentially about the rejection of a here and now and an insistence on potentiality or concrete possibility for another world."
In memory of José Esteban Muñoz, from his book, Cruising Utopia: The Then and There of Queer Futurity (via nyupress)
"The language forged by black people in this country, on this continent…got us from one place to another. We described the auction block. We described what it meant to be there. We survived what it meant to be torn from your mother, your father, your brother, your sister. We described it. We survived being described as mules, as having been put on earth only for the convenience of white people. We survived having nothing belonging to us, not your mother, your father, not your daughter, not your son. And we created the only language in this country."
James Baldwin, Black English: A Dishonest Argument.
(I’m so grateful to James Baldwin. He gives us so much. He gives all of us land. Not landscape. Concrete, austere, LAND: to roam, to flourish, to make our own, collectively.—TO)
“This Is Sun Ra,” Excerpts from an interview by Denys Irving