sometimes. we. cannot. be. with. our. bodies. 2017

Vanessa German
New Installations: 40th Year, October 6, 2017 – July 29, 2018
mixed media

this work is a dimensional living reckoning the living reckoning is bold erruptive disruptive work against systems amp pathologies that oppress amp subvert overt...

Artist Statement

this work is a dimensional living reckoning. the living reckoning is bold,erruptive,disruptive work against systems & pathologies that oppress & subvert overt & covert violence onto & into the lives & humanity of marginalized people on this land. to say that, sometimes we cannot be with our bodies, is deep acknowledgement of an ongoing reckoning between past,present,future & striations of the political, cultural & spiritual impact of systemic racism & its attendant brutalities on the physical & spiritual bodies of Black, Brown & Native peoples on this land.
the living reckoning houses a set of, ‘secret survival’ skills that act as a kind of ‘living life vest’
against the drowning & submersion of body, intellect, & spirit to the incremental rape of one’s humanity in a system of white supremacy, xenophobia, anti-blackness, patriarchy, transphobia, homophobia & generalized hate of otherness.
the living reckoning insists on centering the Technology of the Soul, as a radical instrument of justice. The Technology of the Soul resides within the momentum of truth that the past is not dead, it is not even past, It exerts constant pressure on the present & can be mined for strategic ingredients to be used for intentional & creative future making. All of this is Love.
the living reckoning is a ferocious Loving in the face of the unbearable undoing of personhood. The living reckoning insists & works to a zero-place where the truth that All Human beings are created equal with dignity & rights stands.

‘‘I am thinking about Trayvon, Korryn Gaines, Eric Garner, Philandro Castille… I am thinking about Chyna Doll Dupree, Tearia Whitehead…I am thinking about the City of Bones… & all of the nameless disappeared peoples whose blood built the pillars of this democracy…I am thinking about Sandra Bland…. & what the media does in the wake of these murders…I am thinking about how sometimes, when the police are at my car, or another ________ woman at a city park threatens to call them on me, I can do this thing where I send ALL of my emotions to my feet. I run them as quickly as I can out the window of my face & I hide them somewhere in a bomb shelter in my soul– to survive. To survive the hate, meanness, the incremental rape of my own humanity, I must sometimes leave my body to a secret set of senses that will permit my mouth to open to answer questions, but will not permit me to use my teeth to chew the shit out of some mthrfckrs face when they come at me with word-violence & attempts at soul diminishing leaps of bllshit. sometimes. I cannot be with the rage of my own body. because it cd leave me.without my own body.”

About the Artist

Vanessa German is a poet, actress, photographer, sculptor, designer and educator who creates arresting visual and performance pieces for audiences in the U.S. and around the world.