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  • Stefanie Cohen

Reflecting on Vulnerabilty and Offering Work Freely


Back before the world shut itself down, but really, only shortly before this was the case, we marked our tenth anniversary of collaboration with a public celebration and sharing of art and process.  From February 13th at noon until midnight (of Valentine's Day)  we opened the doors of our space Light Box and the contents of our studio working process for a durational installation/open rehearsal; this, in acknowledgement of ten years of collaboration under the name "Upended Teacups" and the beginning of the next decade making our work together under our own names. We have much gratitude to all who came, participated, contributed, and helped us to honor the occasion, and give special thanks, as well, to those who through Creative Tithing helped to fund this experiment.

  

It is one thing to show work that feels in some way "finished" or complete enough to warrant putting out into the world, and quite another to invite others publicly into a raw process.  Over the years of making art together we have found that our work as performers sometimes takes the role of facilitators of experiences rather than simply or clearly as the presenters of them -- the lines between audience/performer/participant/human to human keep shifting.  We were pleasantly surprised to witness how actively engaged each person was with our installation -- from participating by playing music, to interacting with objects, to building and re-building the installation, itself.  


In many ways, this event felt like a way to continue to sort through the roles that we hold as artists in our community and as members of a vibrant ecosystem that the Creative Tithing project nurtures and supports.  Promoting education and healing through participating in art.  Through witnessing art.  Through making art.  Through playing in ways that don't at all feel like making.  Through building and dismantling and re-building with the materials given us.

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