Autobiographical Fragments, 10/14/2020
photograph by Maria Baranova for Faces of Downtown Scene, Gowanus, 2020
As a child, I was inspired by my father's testimonies of hiding silently in trees to hunt deer in the forest preserves surrounding our home. Venturing out alone for hours at a time I slowly cultivated the ability to disappear. Reminiscent of a peeping tom, I would climb trees, hide in shrubs and grasses staying completely still until the animals would come out and go about their life without us. I would study the attention and body mechanics of the non-humans as they moved through the complex, sticky ecosystems beyond the trails and try to emulate them to the best of my human ability. These experiences in the forest, marshes and prairies of the midwest had a powerful impact on the way I read my surroundings and the people I encounter(ed). They also significantly shifted my focus towards the body and taught me over time about the hidden truths that become embedded throughout it and how words often contradict that. It also constituted my formative movement studies and spawned my inclinations that led me towards slow time, long process, Butoh and anthropology.
Polaroid by Raven Jackson, Brooklyn, 2020
Polaroid by Muyassar Kurdi, Ridgewood, 2019