Thursday, April 24, 2008

WHY ARTISTS SHOULDN'T BE ALLOWED TO WRITE ABOUT THEIR WORK

ALIZA SHVARTS GUEST COLUMNIST, YALE DAILY NEWS It creates an ambiguity that isolates the locus of ontology to an act of readership. . . This ambivalence makes obvious how the act of identification or naming - the act of ascribing a word to something physical - is at its heart an ideological act, an act that literally has the power to construct bodies. In a sense, the act of conception occurs when the viewer assigns the term “miscarriage” or “period” to that blood. . .

It is the intention of this piece to destabilize the locus of that authorial act, and in doing so, reclaim it from the heteronormative structures that seek to naturalize it.

As an intervention into our normative understanding of “the real” and its accompanying politics of convention, this performance piece has numerous conceptual goals. The first is to assert that often, normative understandings of biological function are a mythology imposed on form. It is this mythology that creates the sexist, racist, ableist, nationalist and homophobic perspective, distinguishing what body parts are “meant” to do from their physical capability. The myth that a certain set of functions are “natural” (while all the other potential functions are “unnatural”) undermines that sense of capability, confining lifestyle choices to the bounds of normatively defined narratives.

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