Winner of the Artlink 22nd Annual Juried Exhibition, November 2022
Covid19 had a devastating impact on performance artists. With mass closures of public venues, performance artists were forced to adapt to the limitations of video-telephony—musicians, dancers and actors flocked to Zoom and other streaming platforms to give stunted, amputated approximations of live performance. Most shook their heads and lamented the shortcomings of these technologies.
What distinguishes a “live” performance from an online performance? What if the “limitations” of online adaptation—such as latency, physical distance, the absence of immediacy or corporeal presence—were treated as a feature, not a bug? Concurrently, what if there was a dissolution of those elements that made traditional performance temporally and economically exclusive?
Simply put, a performance in real life is different than a live-streamed performance. Effective adaptation and a harmonious, symbiotic integration of these two realms requires careful navigation of the constraints of each system.
_irl is an exercise in resiliency. This expression reframes the live performance as a slow process that advocates the subtle richness and variation that emerges from repetition and multiplicity over the immediate and explosive impact of the garish spectacle. It is impossible by design to enjoy from beginning to end, and instead encourages bite-sized tastings, leisurely—inclusively—at one’s own convenience.
_irl is an experimental durational performance using ORCA, an esoteric live-coding environment. The semi-generative soundscape is authored daily in real-time over the course of a month as an unfolding expression of conditions set by the artist. _irl considers the affordances of contemporary live-streamed performance and reflects on such themes as “liveness,” immediacy, and access. Referring to the novel coding practice of Cellular Automata, the code behaves as a colony of living creatures that evolve and flourish sonorously despite arbitrary rules and remotely imposed aesthetics.
Premiered [2021.05.22] @ the Mood Room in Phoenix, AZ. This month-long live stream will begin [2021.05.26] with new code written daily.
_irl is for sale as a limited series of NFTs: 15 unique, snapshot states of the environment captured over the course of the month-long performance, accompanied with all the necessary files to experienced _irl on any Linux/MacOS/Win system. A five-minute high-res audio+video will also be included of the unique code “performing” in situ.