SHIVARATRI IN THE HISPANIOLA
I entered the room wrapped in a red cloth cut in the cartographic form of the Hispaniola, the island that is the home to the Dominican Republic and Haiti. My body spread the cloth on the floor, I stood up, and with a stick of carbon I wrote on the surface of the map “SHIVARATRI.” I took flowers from a vase in the window of the Defibrillator gallery and stuffed the stems into my socks. Then, from the patio I returned to the space with a baby stroller full of green plantains. I gave each person in the audience a plantain, and then I sat with my hands covering my head and I asked the audience to throw the plantains at me, which they did.
Shivaratri, in India, is the great night of Shiva. It is considered a day of good luck, and of the different ways to celebrate, in the far South, the population throws plantains at the parade of floats, to attract good luck to their town.
This performative “anti-ritual” navigated between ritualistic dogmas and the conservative politics of our peoples; it dialogued with the absurdity of luck, in a ‘luck’ of visual anti-poetry full of magic, light, pain, and uncertainty. It is the aesthetic of the “invisible” border so complicated through the centuries.