Zoo and I did the roving performance thing again with Milk’n’Cookies at Scabaret, the opening performance night of the Sheila Autonomista festival (“independent, non-corporate, non-profit, women's art, cultural, political, activist festival held in Sydney”).
When we arrived, we were greeted by the ever wonderful Wife who was excitingly competent and looked sternly over a clipboard. After getting detention from the English teacher at Queer Prom, I seem to be developing a clipboard-and-glasses fetish.
The Milk’n’Cookies piece, I was thinking initially, was the first piece of performance I have done which is not political in anyway…. However, after doing it a second time, and with more of an anarcho feminist queer grrrl crowd than Velvet (where we’d previously Milk'n'Cookied) would attract, I’ve changed my mind.
Now I realise how interesting it is in terms of people’s reactions to ‘invading’ personal space, even when I am in fact inviting them to eat cookies from my cleavage. Lots of fodder for thinking about what is appropriate or inappropriate in public spaces, and I’m now thinking about a performance art piece I read about that was performed in a shopping mall (was it by Holly Hughes?) where the performer walked around with a cardboard box over her torso, with a curtain at the front – she invited people to put their hands under the curtain and feel her breasts – they could feel, but not look, and the whole time she is making polite everyday conversation with them, in an open air shopping mall, without breaking obscenity laws in any way. I love this idea of presenting people with the opportunity to play with their ideas of what is sexy, what is polite, what is a personal boundary, what is a necessary social limit, and what is merely customary……
Also, using references from traditionally str8 porn/raunch culture – by Zoo saturating me in milk (I was moaning and groaning and flicking my hair around, ala girl doing a bikini carwash, under this milk bath) has got to be disorientating in this kind of queer feminist space…
I actually started this blog in part, to encourage regular writing practice, and there are times when it looms before me, when I have no creative urges or burning passion about any one issue, so I “cheat” and post notices of sex worker rights events or media about sex worker issues….
Writing has been a nightmare for me lately, with an utter lack of creativity and scary computer screens or very empty note book pages…. I have to do two articles for my non-sex work, and have another submission to do for an external source. I had a weekend spent in long painful labour for another writing project…. On the Monday, I finally ended up sitting through over 10 hours of writers block, including all the doubt and fear and feelings of not having any skill whatsoever that happens at times like this. However, I forced myself to sit and let the words come at their own sweet time… Finally when I had exactly the right number of words, I emailed it off, without even a final read through. Ruthless but necessary.
Now the other pieces seem like more of a possibility… sometimes only sitting through the fear will bear fruit.