Boa Constrictor

2015

Showcase of FurryNavel’s residency at The Cultch. July 31st Friday & Aug 1st Saturday 8pm

two ‘only invitation’ showings
Runtime: 60-70min

Devised and performed by multimedia artist Minah Lee & actor/butoh dancer Brennan Campbell

Sound design and live music/audio by Daryn Cassie

Dramaturg/tech advisor: Terence Grigoruk

Videographer for documentation of rehearsals and a showcase: Elisha Burrows

Minah Lee & Brennan Campbell during the showcase of The Lovers Inside Boa Constrictor

Womb/Tomb – creating a physical and psychological passage into memory

Here is a museum tour you can join if you are lost on your way home. You will be guided through an exhibition, which features Nobody (who had misplaced her name). Her artifacts will reveal her sense of pain, misery, vulnerability, and beauty, as they were formed in her biological and social body. Resurrected objects will expose themselves and invite you into a womb/tomb, a space in which you will be able to breathe. Engraved memories will be visualized on the surfaces of mummified skin and digital devices that insist on merging with our bodies.

What is exposed and exhibited is a daughter’s impossible attempt to dive into her mother’s womb. She is perhaps obsessed with modern Ophelias, who had buried themselves under the water. Her desire is torn between running away from home and returning. Her will is suspended between remembering and forgetting. Only by facing the dead, the unbearable, she discovers her body to utter what is unspoken and unspeakable.

Her body is a watermelon of her roots, a beehive of her traumas, and a museum of her memories. She dissects it to see beyond its façade. 

We live in a multicultural society where people from different backgrounds have their own historical and social traumas. We try to assimilate into this new culture to survive. I am interested in what goes easily missing in the mist of mingling with each other. We sometimes shut ourselves down before we express ourselves because we often experience feeling misunderstood. Many of us face the barrier of understanding the essence of each other. What we don’t usually say has its mouth and teeth somewhere else. It finds a body or creates a language to be expressed through another medium when it is suppressed. I believe that tolerance comes from our willingness to witness these newborn bodies and foreign languages.

This project is the embryo of my hybrid language.

How does a foreign body carry the baggage of personal and social traumas in it? How does it bear the weight of it? Does she/he try to remember or forget? What does she/he chose to sacrifice in order to assimilate into a new culture when she/he is relocated in a foreign land?

If trauma forces a person to create a new language to process the shock, how does the language transform in the course of time?

How does the body of the past exist in the body of the presence?