BEARDED LADY 1992

 

The spectator is in front of a tent that is dark inside. By putting in the slot a 200 lira coin, he/she can see for 15 seconds the bearded lady (me) sitting in an armchair. This "game" works with the same structure as a porno "peep show", or as a circus side show. The fact that the viewers must pay forces them to pay more attention to what they are seeing and at the same time gives them a sense of power over me: they have paid to see me so I am theirs for 15 seconds. This way, their mind does not perceive the work of art or the performance but see only the "obvious" level of reading: the bearded lady, the monster, the different, the weak. The sense of power, together with the fear of the unknown sets the way for self-defense, refutal or aggressiveness, depending upon the personality of the viewer.

This performance was presented for two weeks every night in a bar in Rome (Café Picasso) in front of a mixed public, in 1992.

 

But you had to be there.