EmmaS

A Performance Art Piece That Isn’t Fucking Mindless

As a recent graduate of the awfully pretentious Fine Arts program at Philadelphia’s University of the Arts, I’ve seen it all when it comes to performance art and… I’m not exactly proud of it. For anyone unaware (lucky you), performance art is basically doing whatever you feel is necessary in the name of art and documenting it somehow; whether it’s a video recording or an actual live performance. Having spent the past four years surrounded by aspiring Target employees artists who are under the impression that they’re in fact god’s gift to the art world, I’ve seen a lot of.. well… really shitty performance art.

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Yes, that is the volume being adjusted mid-performance… so powerful *golf clap*

So this being the case, I am very turned off by even the idea of anything that may be considered “performance art,” I have lots of trouble identifying any legitimate communication involved. However, earlier today I stumbled upon perhaps the first actually compelling explanation of a performance piece compliments of Columbia University’s Emma Sulkowicz. The Ivy-League student’s latest work “Carry That Weight” was inspired by the “weight” she now carries after being raped in her own dorm bed on her first day of Sophomore year. The performance itself includes Sulkowicz carrying the mattress from her dorm room literally everywhere she goes until the accused rapist is expelled from the university.

https://youtu.be/l9hHZbuYVnU

I think this project is a great example of how art can be used in a rehabilitating and informational fashion; you know, what art should be used for. I can only hope that this piece really works out as not only a performance in itself, but also as a means of removing a scumbag from a usually prestigious school. Best of luck to Emma! After all, rape is no joke… fellas.

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