They Wonder, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art
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As a queer artist I seek to create a temporal historical rupture and point backwards to forms of historical queerness. By engaging in the art of queer craft aesthetic, I hand crafted my own version of a Wonder Woman costume. During the performance They Wonder I repeatedly spin around and around in circles. I am interested in the continuous action of spinning and getting no-where, falling down and getting back up. This specific action of spinning comes from Dara Birnbaum’s Technology/Transformation: Wonder Woman (1978). Birnbaum appropriates and edits footage from the1970’s TV show of Lynda Carter as "Wonder Woman" whirling around and around. Clair Bishop states in Radical Museology, that artist must not bend to the pressures of commodification, “but that they mobilize the world of visual production to inspire the necessity of standing on the right side of history.” They Wonder goes against the populist template of art as a form of leisure or entertainment. Comic Books have always revealed themes and characters that can be identified as queer, the majority of superheroes always live two lives, one as hero and one as civilian. They Wonder performs this doubling. After the performance is complete I change out of my costume. Audience members fail to recognize me as Wonder Woman.
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