Barbara T. Smith and Kim Jones will discuss their own historic works and the milieu of Los Angeles performance art in a conversation among colleagues. Smith was an important participant in the thriving feminist performance movement that evolved in L.A. in the early 1970s. Jones’ famous “Mudman” persona was a challenging life-as-art project that brought echoes of an American experience in Vietnam to the streets of Los Angeles. The artists will contextualize their practices in dialogue, and reflect on a trajectory that has brought them to the present.
This event is part of a series of conversations and performances called “Talks about Acts,” organized by Malik Gaines and Alexandro Segade that seeks to broaden the evolving dialogue around performance practices. For the Pacific Standard Time Performance and Public Art Festival, three remarkable events will continue this evolution: this conversation between artists Barbara T. Smith and Kim Jones, a reading with artist Ed Bereal and former members of the Bodacious Buggerrilla street theater troupe the following evening, and a production of Eleanor Antin’s classic play, Before the Revolution, co-directed by Antin herself, on the last day of the Festival, January 29. These projects use the frame of Pacific Standard Time to draw attention to crucial developments in performance practices of the 1960s and 70s, and the special character California artists contributed to that history.
Developed in 2007 by Malik Gaines and Alexandro Segade at LAXART, Talks About Acts is a series of conversations, presentations and performances that inform the contemporary discussion around performance practices. Previous participants have included Scoli Acosta, Ron Athey, Andrea Fraser, Coco Fusco, Lia Gangitano, Los Super Elegantes, Ann Magnuson, José Muñoz, Mario Ybarra, Jr., and Eleanor Antin, whose keynote talk in 2007 laid the foundation for this year’s project.