Sometimes you need shock... to open up a new space. Even for something as beautiful as swimming, you have to plunge your arms into the water, to disrupt things in order to glide.
Those were the words of Ronaldo Wilson, author of Poems of the Black Object, when I asked him why he wanted to go through with a charged performance in Seattle—despite the fact that the Frye Art Museum canceled it for just that charged quality.
And the words in the headline of this post came from interviewing on the same subject Cathy Hong, the author of Engine Empire, and one of the five poets who, it turns out, have found a home for their homeless performance after all. Canoe Social Club stepped up and offered a space. Coon Songs, Kitsch, and Conceptual Writing is March 1 at 4 pm, described as:
A performative conversation about race, ventriloquism, coon songs, language, improvisation, and the American love of authenticity. With Douglas Kearney, Cathy Hong, Ronaldo Wilson, Daniel Tiffany, and VanessaPlace Inc.
Not presented by the Frye Museum.
Not that there are any hard feelings. Mark the calendar. And maybe go over to the Facebook post and see how you feel while looking at the offensive actual old ad that still offends today.