In 2009, I started a "short-duration cult" as an artist-in-residence on Bumpkin Island, in Boston Harbor. I recruited three "devotees" who lived with me on the island for a week; built a "temple" from materials they found on the island; learned rituals that were performed at particular times of day; and passed out cult literature in an effort to gain new recruits. On the weekend, when the public was invited to visit art projects around the island, I sat in apparent meditation for 8 hours each day.
The project was actually about the flight patterns to and from the city's main airport which cross right over the island—many of the rituals involved gestures taken from airline safety videos—but no one knew that until afterwards. They just took time to be in an urban public space for the sake of being there—owning it together.
(Collaborative performance and installation, mixed media, clarinet, white costumes, writing, handmade objects, found objects, professionally printed pamphlets.) Collaborators included: Valerie Isaacs, Zachary Katz, Marisa Miller and Thalia Zedek. Photo credit: David Tames.
A week long performance/installation on Bumpkin Island where I led a “cult” whose main ritual was sitting quietly and looking at the sea. The piece was about the flight patterns to and from Logan Airport over the island, but no one knew that until afterwards. They just took time to be in an urban public space for the sake of being there—owning it together. Features Zach Katz, Marisa Miller and Thalia Zedek. Video credit: Patrick Johnson.