Last week I took part in a collaborative art installation/performance by the artist Dominique Gonzalez Foerster and the composer Ari Benjamin Meyer at The Solomon R. Guggenheim. Nicolas Ghesquière of Balenciaga custom-made our dresses and I had to take mine off on-stage. Being part of the rehearsals and watching the final pieces of this work come together I had no idea how it would come off to the audience.
Among other things: I and three other young women simultaneously played different children’s computer games as an improvisational music ensemble. I derobed and took a shower with a man. The Staten Island Richmond County Orchestra played part of Beethoven’s 6th. Someone cooked mushrooms. Old people sang old songs like Row Row Row Your Boat.
Most of my family and friends hated the work, offering feedback such as “Awful, just awful” and “…audience victimization.”
I still don’t know what I would think if I had walked in off the street to watch this but I do feel good about Roberta Smith’s New York Times review.
I am the “young woman” Roberta Smith refers to here, in the opening of her review:
A few minutes into “NY. 2022,” a performance piece at the Guggenheim Museum last Friday night, a young man and woman stripped naked, stepped into a frosted-glass shower stall and started pouring water on each other. As if on cue, two audience members got up and left the museum’s theater, huffily.