Bird Head Masks On Fire

Rebecca's work and Yona cast big shaddows

It’s been a busy few days with all kinds of shows and work and lectures to see. On Thursday, our resident artist BA Harrington gave a lecture on her work on campus. there was a decent turn out but unfortunately, there was a lecture at the downtown gallery at the same time so a lot of faculty attended that instead. But, the lecture was informative and fun and the group went out and made fools of ourselves at a local pizza place packed with sporty college students.

The picture at the top of this page was taken at Friday night’s event which was Oceanside Museum of Art’s “Art After Dark” event featuring none other than the bizarre and mysterious Rebecca Goodman. Rebecca put on one of her weirdest performances to date. It consisted of two dancers, her and her friend Theresa, each wearing giant bird head masks, and some face painted handlers kind of pushing them around and guiding them through the scene. There were some live birds in cages that were NOT sacrificed and lots of big steel thingies for climbing and getting inside of. And, of course, there was fire…

In the end, these bird-headed (note, I didn’t say bird brained) ladies turn on their cruel master and ensnare him in their talons, dragging him to the very cage in which he had tormented them. Then, they remove their masks revealing that they aren’t birds at all, but are in fact two lovely lady fire dancers. then they fire dance.

Rebecca’s work is gaining a lot of attention lately and I have to give it to her, she can really promote herself. The crowd at Art After Dark dropped everything to film and photograph her and her fellow performers. Granted, some of that could have had something to do with their… less than opaque outfits, but It seemed that they were all pretty impressed with the show. I think this was the best thing I’ve seen her do. For me, her stuff seems to be made for a very specific audience, and I am not it. This performance, while metaphorically still very “heavy” went a bit astray from her usual spiritual, energy, cosmos, circle of life, flow of vibes approach, and stepped instead into the realm of pure weirdness, which I for one appreciate. Anyway, well played Rebecca. you are clearly making this art thing work for you.

Which brings me (this blog is about ME after all) to myself. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what will come next. I have put in some applications and such and received my first real job denial letter. It was expected in this case but still always stings. I mention this because, aside from having a friend performing, I attended this art after dark event to network a bit. I am really trying to do the part of this that I’m not that good at: schmooze. I realize that if I want to do this art thing for real, I have to make my connections, and I’m working on attending as many of these events as possible. Since I’ve decided, at least for now, to try this out here in San Diego, I have to maintain the connections that I have made here. This has been one of the most helpful parts of graduate school. We are handed connections and contacts that would otherwise perhaps never be made. I for one am trying to go against my personal social ineptitude and nurture those relationships as much as possible.

Speaking of meeting people, last Wednesday I had the opportunity to do a private critique with Robert and Shana Parkeharrison. I had of course seen their older work which are these sort of constructed photographic images placing him in vast landscapes and many of you will probably recognize them…

But, their recent work has become more and more sculptural…

They had some really great insights on my work and gave me some excellent feedback. We share an interest in landscape and space and interactions with those so we were able to connect pretty well over the work. I love getting feedback from outsiders to our program. It can be so helpful in gaining perspective on your own process and product.

finally, here’s this…


Filed under art/artists, random, rants

3 responses to “Bird Head Masks On Fire

  1. I love the ParkeHarrison’s work. By the way, they are teaching at Anderson Ranch Arts Center this summer:

  2. Anthony

    bloated Eames Lounge!

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