SPOKEN CARPET MACHINE BODY
I designed a song, costume, and projected images for this work. My collaborator Evan Piro programmed the visual and auditory works into a website to activate the live performance installation. The piece is an exploration of my identity as an Iranian-American obsessed with the intersection of art and technology - as a space to subvert the gaze of the military industrial system and its surveillance of my identity and body.
**I began this work at Abrons Arts Center with The Hemispheric Institute for performance and politics at Tisch NYU, through the Emerge ‘19 Residency.
PEPPER JOHNSON FAMILY HOME / LIVE VIDEO INSTALLATION
I built a room covered in blue and green screen and filled it with surreal sculptures. The room and the works it housed represented the internal world of a character (Pepper Johnson) I had been performing for one year in a video series. Pepper was the matriarch of a family of characters I played which included her husband/boyfriend Danny, and her child Sammy (a wind up Frankenstein toy). The Johnson family was a way for me to work though my middle eastern heritage and the confusion of passing for a white capitalist American.
In the final instillation, I wrote short scripts (10min each) and invited the public into the space to make “live films or home movies”. In one evening Pepper directed 10 films. The public participants were given the option of playing any member of her family, mom, dad, or baby. They took on these roles no matter their age or gender. They reviewed the script for 10 min before entering but it was taken away when they entered the room. Some examples of scenarios are: giving birth to one another, talking in tongues, and working in the Bush war factories. I edited in appropriated youtube and google search footage in post production. Camera: Zach Spears, Sound:Julie Deffet, Door/Script Review: Sonia Choi & Sun Chen (2015)
See Trailer Here: https://vimeo.com/358499350