We aim to destroy all levels of hierarchy to establish a temporary autonomous zone. We assert the importance of more trans and non-binary bodies on stage. We assert the importance of more Arab bodies on stage. We assert the necessity of drawing rapt attention to the violences of the US military complex on the Middle East.
“THE RUPTURE” began with a video collaboration based on Andrea Abi-Karam’s book EXTRATRANSMISSION, a hyper-performative text that simultaneously navigates 1) cyborg-trans identity and 2) PTSD from the War on Terror. Through a synthesis of poetry, performance, and visual futurism, the film creates a visual language centered on the details, intricacies, & violences of un/forced adaptation of the cyborg body. Through discussion on how and where to share the video, we visioned a performance piece to debut at a gay rave in Oakland, CA. We had no rehearsal time. We brought our vision & our materials:
We had hoped for a body-bearing table but there were only fuzzy dice that we covered with silver mylar to make an operating table. The show started late and we were running late because we needed to find a projector. Two friends held iPhone flashlights high above their heads directed at the surgical field. Someone who lived nearby ran home and brought back a sleek portable projector for us to use. We played the audio recording over the PA, which distorted & boomed throughout the space. We approached the operating table from different sides of the room, to tangle and untangle the mesh cable [external brain] on the reflective surface. Lix placed Andrea’s forearm on the surface and began to staple the mesh cable directly to the forearm. We pulled the mesh cable through the staples until it caught, and Lix continued to staple the cable along Andrea’s axes as they moved entirely on to the table: up their upper arm, shoulder, chest, stomach, leg. They reacted to the impact, their sternum rising beneath the clicks. The audio ended and Lix projected the film on the wall while Andrea continued to lay on the OR table, beneath the lights, absorbing the staples as Dorsey Bass’ track drenched the audience.