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WhatIsWhat 1.0 2003

Artist Statement


cipher session  House Dance Conference 2004  New York City


What the pedestrian sees, by chance encounter with me at a precise location, I describe as the completion of a series of cascading rhythmic a-rhythmic utilitarian and acrobatic kinetics performed in relation to urban architecture, traffic, etc. The street audience is what I call the default audience for all street performers, and their greatest contribution is the range of their diversity. They are also the audience best empowered to decide the show’s length and type, whether it is a show or not at all, and whether they will engage or ignore it. Things get interesting with street performance when pedestrians begin to separate into my default audience (static) and the by-passers. Those who stay to watch me, or do so while waiting for the bus or having lunch nearby, follow the performance in time and may ponder the breadth of the possibilities, and at the same time they may gain insight into themselves by also watching the by-passers whose encounter of the performance is fleeting. The gap between the gut impulse and the many truths of a given situation might be my subject of that days journeys into a dance with no home.

I find it very difficult for me to fit into categories of art making as the connective element of my work is not medium based but idea driven. I use drawings, sculpture, video, writing, performance, acting, clowning, skating, dancing and speaking to express one idea. The freestyler that is at the core of my practice is suffocated by the mechinations of the profession. I am here for the future. I am dancing to share the love of humanity. I want peace on earth and an end to the permanent state of War. Thats it.

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This Work, Artist Statement, by Bill Shannon is licensed under a CC BY-NC-SA license.