Body Island

Role: Carpentry and production support

Body Island is inspired by a vision of the performer’s body as a landscape and a site of refuge. In using imagery that evokes a natural catastrophe, the work is a metaphor for how society anticipates and responds to crisis. One performer and ten rats interacted in a closed structure as it flooded. Spectators reclined on the structure while the unseen performance occurred beneath them. Three camera feeds of the action were live-edited and projected onto a screen suspended over the structure. This work exists as a single channel video, as well as a 4-channel video installation.

This work collapse the notions of live performance, documentation of a performance event, and video artwork. The performance captures complex, unpredictable behavior patterns that suggest larger structures. The performer in Body Island uses behavior as a prompt for the rats, who were trained to respond to position and movement as well as environmental factors.

Shot on location at Abrons Art Center, co-presented by The Chocolate Factory.
March 24th, 2011