Date of Submission
Project Advisor 1
You will often hear it said that art does not belong in the space of the political.
Politics is practical, and yet we cry over legislative losses and march in the streets when we are seared by flames of indignation. We paint murals over boarded-up windows, film history as it happens, and go to the club after a long day at work. We sketch lovingly the faces of those lost senselessly, we sing to the rooftops when all hope seems lost, and we speak poems like pounding hammers when no one is willing to listen. We scratch verses into foam cups to pass between prison cells when our voices are gone too.
As an art-maker and choreographer, I am led to inquire: What is the revolutionary potential of performance art? And furthermore, How can I combine a devotion to radical political change with my choreographic practice? This paper will follow as my attempt to answer these questions, drawing on my own life experiences, my choreography, and the work of contemporary artists and thinkers. I define revolution as societal transformation, spearheaded by the collective power of the people. I define performance art as a rigorous creation process that utilizes the medium most original to humanity: our own bodies. Performance art is closest to revolutionary potential insofar as it is closest to physical, tangible, and collective power. My life has been consistently informed by performance art through the lens of choreography. I choreograph to grapple with my emotions, my experiences, and contemporary political problems that seep into my life and my consciousness. The revolutionary potential of performance art and my personal place in it lies in the creative process itself, which holds the power to bridge the gap between imagination and reality, carrying our imagined hopes and dreams for the future into the tangible world.
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Salathe, Antonia, "Wilde Bühne: An Exploration into the Revolutionary Potential of Art" (2023). Senior Projects Spring 2023. 158.
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