I’ve been working as an installation artist with the #riotpop band WASI throughout their Jan 2020 residency at The Satellite in Los Angeles. The design concept centered around our agency regarding the American identity. Through the all-American* pass time of baseball, we looked to traverse time with the audacity of hope and the rage of the underdog with reclamation, snark, and heart: a NEW all-American residency.
It has been such a pleasure to be a part of these events and negotiate the chaos and danger of xenophobia with a revolutionary #riotpop [baseball] team.
For these shows, I constructed a 10’x12’ black light backdrop out of found-cardboard patches to invite everyone into an expanding baseball card composition. I drew and painted the faces of our team (anyone down to ‘play’ at the show) onto the pop-up mural then caught (pun intended) a pic of them individually in front of the backdrop. I made baseball bats out of layers of paint on cardboard and goggles to help us keep our googly eyes on the ball.
Our final show is this Monday 1/27/20 at 8pm. You should come! More info here
*The term”all-American” seemed to me to be at best a misnomer, farce, anachronism and at worst blind nationalism used to instill fear and incite war. I find it off-putting. Working with WASI and after conversations with their singer, Merilou, I sort of stepped back to lean in. I wouldn’t have thought that I could flip the script on my understanding of the idea of All-American: as individuals and as a team we could userp its fallacy from those who I picture waving starry flags and preaching isolation and exclusion. What if we turn the flag into a baseball bat and what if it’s not waving, it’s fucking fighting back [and rocking out on drums]? I don’t know about believing in country or pride. This NEW all-American residency is about humanity and compassion (and music and storytelling!) for me, and I look forward to learning more about what it means to the team, to people who are not Americans, to you, and…I want to end on a baseball pun.