Let me start by saying that you have amazed me beyond belief. It was a sensorial pleasure to watch your performance.
Your first steps walk us into your world and your butt cheeks invite us to look, actually, demand us to look closer. Your pirouettes make you fly and your strides bring you and us back to earth.
By hiding your face you shift, your bottom is the visage as you personify the ass. With your feet stumps you declare: “I am here!” and we assimilate your bold presence.
You turn your back to us and make us suck our breaths in while you suck your icicle/popsicle/asscicle.
Pêdra Costa in her “de_colon_isation” manifesto talks about the butthole of the South, as an allusion of Brazil’s geographic situation in the world and the ass as it is geographically situated on the body.
However, when you bring the butthole to the north, by inverting yourself and shifting the body, you blow my mind. We shit and vomit the colonial ideas, the oppression to free our bodies, but you eat it up through your butthole! An Analphagy! The eye is “O olho do cú” (“The Eye of the Asshole”) the mouth is “a boca do inferno” (“Mouth of Hell”).
You are the spectator of our open mouths. You observe us while you go deep in a dream by closing your “eye” and our hearts beat together with the rhythm of your ass.
Then you are there, the face, the artist exposed giving your open body to us that melt together with your ass fluids. You expose your vulnerability but we are the ones helpless to the gaze of your hole.
You play again with us and also with the stage, owning you and us all with the freedom of your movements.
AND THEN COMES THE BIG TURD! It comes out like an earthworm in a rainy day. Like the snake that bites it’s own tail, the earthworm kisses it’s own ass. It becomes a mouth that kisses your ass, Then it becomes an ass that kisses your face, then a warm safe place for you to rest, a hiding place, a big kiss, a fabulous wig, a big fat cellulitic ass, a big pussy that you come out of as a baby, then it becomes a baby, a leg, an extension of you, wings, a bunny, an open book.
And like this you close the chapter, making us crave for more.
With all my love,
Grata por essa experiência linda!
Denise Palmieri (Brazil, São Paulo, SP, 1986) Performer artist based in Vienna. Graduated in 2011 with a BA in Visual Arts in the Academy of Fine Arts of São Paulo and 2018 with a Diploma in Performative Art at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. She has had her work shown in Brazil, Argentina, Austria and abroad.
When I enter your space, the rigid black box is softened by a slight wave in the dance carpet. A single abnormal bump in an otherwise classically bare theater setting. A swelling full of intrigue, making the room pregnant with possibilities. It teases my curiosity about the unseen, the hidden, the inside. Already, you suggest how impactful a hollow shape can be, and what follows is a revolutionary celebration of the concave.
You enter, cupping a glass bowl full of ice cubes and what looks like tiny stalactites. Half of your body is exposed, the other half is covered with lace. The delicate patterns of this fabric reveal layers of transparency through which your skin peaks and your breath flows. Your sex is concealed. Your ass is seen. Already, I think of you as a faceless expert in disappearance, who elegantly balances the invisible.
Next, you invent a traditional dance for an unknown planet, where butts are free and energy reserves are bottomless. Through each galvanizing step, I stare shamelessly at your backside.
You then flip upside down, and swallow an ice pop. Bottoms up.Your butt cheeks savor this cool treat and lick it with a timid yet tenacious appetite. The translucent shape reflects the light, glimmering, gem-like. With each pulsing movement, the frigid dildo molds your insides. Becoming both a prolongation of you spine, and a marker of your inner shape. And then it vanishes. As you keep moving, head-down/ass-up, I imagine it inside of you, sensing what it would be like to (re)organise an entire muscular-skeletal structure around this specific center. Ass is the new heart.
The magic continues as you disappear in the dark. Cryptic lyrics fill up the room. A singer deplores their own emptiness: "Sans déconner, j'ai l'cerveau vide, Les yeux vides, le compte vide, le coeur vide" No kidding, I got an empty brain, empty eyes, empty bank account, empty heart. You on the other hand, embrace the void, celebrate the hollowness. Squeezing and releasing your glutes, your sphincter, your pelvic floor, your hamstrings, we're given a thorough anatomy lesson, a poetic guided tour of your ass, a glimpse into what's just under the surface of your skin.
When you get up again, your face is now unveiled. You start moving, softly and playfully re-appropriating the coded movements of contemporary dance. I can't stop smiling and I'm also thinking of the French expression "avoir un balai dans le cul" (meaning having a broom up your ass) used to qualify a stuck-up, rigid attitude. We should all try frozen dildos instead and start enjoying our butts as much as you do, swirling around in your post-aristocratic-Tinkerbell-revolution dance.
You finish with a last reveal. Pulling out a long coral cushion from underneath the mysterious carpet wave. Making the invisible visible once more. Bending and caressing it, transforming it with your own delicate spells, it becomes, morphs, muffles and folds in. At time a swelling clit or labia-like, a phallic carrot or (buzzing) rabbit-ears. Once again you are layering realities, showcasing the unseen. Teasing our imagination, you play a game of grown-up peek-a-boo and mirror all our deliciously dirty thoughts.
Thank you for being so beautifully transparent. You made me feel empty and full in the best possible ways.
With Love, always.
Claire Lefèvre is a French choreographer, performer and writer based in Vienna. She took part in imagetanz in 2016 and 2017 with her works Function Man and S/M and showed Welcome to the Fisch-Haus in brut in 2018.