The work included in the Sweat Series addresses the process of perspiration, physical effort, and anxiety. Over the next few months the work we will feature uses the body’s natural process of secretion to challenge perceptions of the body and the infinite ways in which we can be present in our skin.
The Present Tense became familiar with the work of Rachelle Beaudoin in 2008 when we screened footage from her project “Cheer Shorts” as part of the Contaminate 3 Festival. The following piece “Way to Go!” fits both into The Present Tense’s Series on “Taste” and “Sweat.” We have chosen to feature this piece between the two series. Enjoy!
“I often use humor and sarcasm as an entry point into issues of gender, power and class. I have been investigating the conflation of “hotness” and empowerment, most recently through pieces that focus on physical fitness and working out. These works are introspective performances as I explore the pressures and contradictions I face while inhabiting the space of popular culture. Way to Go! is a performance for video in which I do as many pushups as I can while eating a bite of cake with each pushup. The cycle of indulging, feeling guilty and working out is compressed into one action.”- Rachelle Beaudoin
Rachelle Beaudoin is an artist who uses video, wearables, and performance to explore feminine iconography and identity within popular culture. She attended the College of the Holy Cross and holds a Master’s degree in Digital+Media from Rhode Island School of Design. She has exhibited at Intimacy: Across Digital and Visceral Performance Goldsmiths London UK, the University of Lapland in Rovaniemi Finland, Low Lives 3 and Itinerant Festival of International Performance Art, Queens NY. Rachelle was an artist-in-residence at Anderson Ranch, Snowmass CO this past spring.
"Hambre" 2008 Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía Madrid, Spain Photo by Fuensanta Balanza
Domix Garrido works in the field of performance that is generated around the experimental arts in the context of conceptual art. Much of his work is developed by uniting two perspectives: socio-political and personal. He aims for his work to address the strength of natural and profound emotion. His objective is to induce emotion that leads to deeper levels of thought throughout his audiences. Garrido often employs the action of eating to build relationships with his witnesses. Using minimal resources, this action becomes paramount, reminding those who experience the work that we are connected by this shared human need. The Present Tense has chosen to feature a collection of his pieces utilizing the sense of taste.
In his piece “Hambre” Garrido is installed, blindfolded, in an outdoor space near a museum. It is Christmastime. He eats a hard cake typical of this period. The cake is in 6 pieces, forming the word HAMBRE (hunger). The texture is hard to swallow, so the artist washes it down with champagne. He spits out the remains repeatedly until the performance ends.
"H2mbre" 2009 EBENT Festival Internacional de fects performátiques Barcelona, Spain Photo by José Carlos Soto
He brings this action into the context of a Fine Arts University in his piece “H2mbre” in 2009. Garrido develops this action in 2012 bringing it further into the public realm. In a public square the artist uses a large knife to cut the words HAMBRE out of cakes. Instead of engaging in the eating as an individual action, he invites the public to eat cake. His eyes are covered while he eats a hard cake. A homeless person offers 1 euro to buy the letter “A”. She mimics the artist’s action of chewing and spitting on the ground. They “eat” together until the end of the performance.
Garrido employs a site-sensitive approach in his piece, “Chokran”. During Ramadan, the artist waits for sunset to walk into the Atlantic Ocean holding a tray of sugar cubes. Once in the water, Garrido makes an offering to the sea and “asks him to eat sugar.” When the ocean gives back the tray, it frees one piece that Garrido eats. He allows the cube to dissolve in his mouth, experiencing the contrast of sweet and salty before leaving the water and thanking the ocean.
"Chokran" Atlantic Action 2010 ASILAH Tangier, Morroco Photo by Francis Ujaque
Garrido shares memories of his grandfather as the beginning action of “Interrumpido”. He offers the audience cigarette paper made from esparto leaves and pencils. He asks the public to write the name of a loved one and stick the paper on his head. After the audience has made their contributions, Garrido ingests all the names by eating the “leaves.”
"Interrumpido” 2010 ARTóN. Arte de Acción Madrid, Spain Photo by José Mogrol
In “Mudança“ Garrido addresses taste without utilizing the action of eating. He picks leaves from trees in a public garden. After dusting his head and mouth with powdered sugar, he wraps his head with the leaves he has collected. He walks through a nearby outdoor market wearing this mask of sorts, the sugar gathering in the corners of his mouth and the space where the nostril and cheek meet. He purchases a couple of decorative buttons from a seller at the market, a reference to taste as it relates to esthetic standards. Garrido places the buttons over his eyes, removing the sense of sight. He lays down, the buttons tumble to the ground.
"Mudança" Epipiderme Feira da Ladra Lisbon, Portugal Photo by Mario Gutiérrez Cru
Domix Garrido graduated in Performing Arts and specialized in Museology and Contemporary Art. Domix is the founder of Festival ABIERTO DE ACCIÓN in Spain, and gives a series of performance art workshops in educational institutions and art centers.
As an organizer, Domix promotes the research and the exhibition of the performance art through events in several cities.
As a performer he has performed his work in many spaces as well as national and international events like: CENDEAC, LAB, Centro Párraga, Progreso80, EBENT, Acción!MAD, OutOfMind, Poéticas, Weber-Lutgen Gallery, JIAAP, Espacio-1, Préavise Désordre Urbain, Théâtre des Bernardines, Octubre – Arrt d´Acció, Epipiderme, L´Estruch, ARTóN, Kunsthall, FITUR.