Sunday, March 1, 2015

Color the Ball: Open Studios with Jenna North @ The Mayro Clinic, Utica NY February 28 2015

Artist Jenna North with one of her studio assistants, setting up the day before. The space was indeed completely transformed into the mad vision of a compulsive collector obsessed with the concept of hydrofracking. Her name is Wendy Well and has been an artistic persona Jenna has drawn from over the past few years.

To learn more about Jenna's artwork visit her website by clicking here.

The height of the evening's mayhem in the main studio room with one of the several bands who played delivering their end of the music spectrum. 

The hallway, where I spent much of the evening visiting with artist colleagues from the Utica crew where we could just about hear each other. 

Some of the student work from Jenna's color theory class which set the tone for the "color ball" concept for the night.

Not bad at all.

One of my own landscape paintings on the wall there, later removed during the performance section and replaced by oddities I did not think to get a picture of.

The set by electronica noise band Hand With Legs, with Utica scene personalities Phung Gye Ohm in white and Tim Schram from The Dev on batterie.

This was cool.

Both scripted and spontaneous performance art all evening. I was invited to take part but insisted on being a contributing artist & observer. Besides, I would have had to wear a dress & didn't have the right shoes for it.

Artist Jenna North as Wendy Well, and the purpose of the evening was for Jenna to put Wendy to sleep with the fishes & set the persona aside for a new phase in her work.

The procession of assistants who constructed a Wendy Well installation which was rather violently destroyed in her symbolic death at the climax of the evening. Indeed soon after taking this picture I moved my ass to another part of the room as a definite aura of intimidation descended as Wendy began her antics of hyper-decorating the room. A scaffold type structure was erected (seen below after being demolished) and those of us who know Jenna & the depth of her commitment to her art were genuinely concerned that she intended to have herself strung up on it and harmed in some manner which had not been revealed. 

Such was not the case, but for about twenty minutes I was seriously concerned about how far she was going to take this. Which in the end amounted to Wendy destroying her prepared set and then casting herself bodily into a pool of water, thrashing about like a fish in a bucket for a minute, then fifteen minutes of lying still while the audience slowly became uncomfortable. Comments were eventually called out loud, including one bearded chap who yelled "End it!" To which I could only add "I think she did, Bro."

Goodnight, Wendy.

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