“Don’t Google his name before you go to bed,” Invisible Exports‘s Benjamin Tischer advised me last night at a NURTUREArt party. He was speaking of Ron Athey, an extreme performance artist who will be performing Friday evening at Allen Street Studios. Athey, he told me, isn’t exactly for the squeamish.
He was right. A little early morning research reveals much about the famed artist (I’d only just learned about). Athey’s work explores the relationship between desire, sexuality, and traumatic experience, which basically means a lot of blood, fisting and body modification. In 1994, Athey drew fury from right wing culture crusaders after he made cuts in co-performer Divinity Fudge’s back, soaked up his blood with towels and then hoisted them in the air over audience heads with a pulley. In 2000, Athey played the staring role in the Danish porn film HotMen CoolBoyz, where his performance referencing philosopher George Bataille “The Solar Anus”, was included.
I’m not the type to enjoy this kind of work, but I find it fascinating that it exists. For those with a stronger constitution than I, Ron Athey and Julie Tolentino will perform “Self Obliteration I and II” this Friday. It’ll be Athey’s 50th birthday, so fans should definitely stop by to pay him a visit. $20 bucks at the door.
Presented by: ParticipantINC, Invisible Exports, and House of Thought
Full invite here.