In a darkened room, a pulsing light, a glowing box, a rhythmic pounding, a live recording,
herenothere. Chuckers, slowly walks, slowly turns, slowly kneels, slowly prays, slowly bends, slowly sits, slowly feels,
slowly something appears,
not really here,
not really nowhere.
It has been a little over six years since I came out and it has had a profound impact on my life... I grew up in a liberal, very loving and open family of predominantly creative types and even within an accepting environment like that I found it incredibly difficult to come out as gay... I was always in my head playing out every social situation as I never felt comfortable around people, which was in large part due to a very low sense of self worth brought on by a denial of my sexuality and a mentality that I was un-loveable. I was cripplingly shy, awkward and quiet at times, and I was constantly conscious of that and hated it, but didn't know how to get past it. I accepted it as part of me.
My sense of worth was in large part due to the fact that we live in a heteronormative society and defining oneself as something different then that was a heavy burden to bear because it makes you into the other... I didn't want it to be a big deal, I didn't want to label myself as gay because I felt like I should recede and not give people a way to pay attention to me. I just wanted to exist in the background.
It wasn't until I started connecting with queer people online, particularly my future husband Ryan, that my life made a seismic shift. Not only did I get to experience intimacy with another person (both physically and emotionally) but I opened up in a way that I couldn't before and felt a love wholly reciprocated... a love that I never once second-guessed if it was real or if it was fleeting. Ryan also threw so much queer culture at me that I was so ignorantly unaware of and it made me just so proud and joyful and liberated to be involved in this beautiful community.
I began to feel much more comfortable with myself, which in turn allowed me connect with friends and people in a way that I hadn't before. I started to connect with people as opposed to always trying to distance myself. Slowly the shell I was forever wearing began to break away and I was just there, in the moment, and okay with it.
I write this post to share my experience of how coming out has affected me in an effort to add to the symphony of voices that are making the world a safer space for queer people to exist. Coming out is not an easy thing to do even if you are in the best possible environment to do so. It's a weight that's difficult to carry and is hard to get past, but so many positive things happen when you do. There are people out there who will love you for who you are. Love permeates. Let it permeate through you too �
jars (dangles) 2.0 and pinekone get all feelie with each other... again.
from the "kind of blue" series
glitterbug wanders around (and is drawn to some other beings presence)
part of "kind of blue" series
Kuckeroo discovers it's bits, and that leads to some joyous fun!
part of "kind of blue" series
polly and pinekone fall into each other
part of "kind of blue" series
Zab goes about its everyday routine, until it gets confronted by a strange and new creature (tENTra). Then it all gets a bit sad :(
tENTra wanders around the space...curious about its surroundings, it sometimes looks like it's in agony while it stomp-dances.
pinekone is the centre of attention, as both polly and jars (dangles) 2.0 touch them and try to wrangle some their affection.
in a /space\
in a haze, awakens.
a static mind-fog persists,
bangs its head to feeeeeeel.
from the distance comes
a pink being;
little bits dancing,
faking, making, resting
fall together & come apart.
of silly art
there is something about this space that is special to pinekone
performer - ryan melmoth
sound by ryan melmoth
slowthrower | "Chrysalis" parts I & II | nightshop | bloomington, il | october 17, 2018 | with Chris Albert & Ryan Paluczak
jars (dangles) dances to music by ryan p ~ performed live during an exhibition by a.j. art slut at ramp-arts gallery in blono, illinois on august 03, 2018. music by ryan paluczak, video captured by jeremy langston
a performance by myself and emily lehman ~ performed in the dying grass in front of the center for performing arts at illinois state university ~ god bless the grass that grows thru the crack. they roll the concrete over it to try and keep it back. the concrete gets tired of what it has to do, it breaks and it buckles and the grass grows thru, and god bless the grass. god bless the truth that fights toward the sun, they roll the lies over it and think that it is done. it moves through the ground and reaches for the air, and after a while it is growing everywhere, and god bless the grass. -melvina reynolds
god bless the grass that grows thru the crack.
they roll the concrete over it to try and keep it back.
the concrete gets tired of what it has to do,
it breaks and it buckles and the grass grows thru,
and god bless the grass.
god bless the truth that fights toward the sun,
they roll the lies over it and think that it is done.
it moves through the ground and reaches for the air,
and after a while it is growing everywhere,
and god bless the grass.
https://joshtroach.itch.io/home a (corrupted) playthrough of hOme... guide a thing as you attempt to find placement (and identity) in space
In this performance, (entitled glitterbug) I dressed up as a glitterbug and made little creature-things to place on shelves. These creature-things were made out of rudamentery materials, such as paper-clay, water based paint, sequins and glitter. I had a helper get people to make drawings of “bug-alien creatures” which were then placed to the side of this character. The character would then look at these drawings occassionally, which they used as inspiration for making the creature-things. This performance took place over the entire two-hour student annual opening.
"Making It!" is a live performance by myself and Emily Lehman, with sound by Ryan Paluczak and Grag Sullo. Two unicorns attempt to make a cake, two other unicorns play some sounds. This performance was done at University Galleries in Normal, IL in 2017. Whitney Johnson is in the oven.
this is a video game that i made where you walk around and interact with things.
(2018) - ~little jig~ musac = low pitched electric bell blanket by buckethead
(2018) - This piece consists of two parts: a star bedazzled paper-bag sculpture with a peephole on the top, and this continuously looping video animation. The dancing of the main character is based off of the strut by the character Dawn Davenport (played by Divine) from John Water's film "Female Trouble." The music is "The Sound of Violence" (slowed down) by Cassius, "When You Coming Out" by Dinosaur Feathers, and "Pretty Woman" by Roy Orbison.
This is a video of some of the work I created while attending the VCU Summer Studio Program in 2015. There are 5 pieces here: one video and four sculptures. One sculpture was kinetic, another one had a sound component. In creating this work, I was most interested capturing these moments between humor(or absurdity)/sadness and deliciousness(or indulgence)/disgust.
This video is a strange and creepy pseudo pornography with weird imagery and nudity.
This is documentation of a performance piece I did in July 2015 at VCUSSP. There are three main components; one is a sculptural nightlight/lube dispensary made primarily of toilet paper and sugar, one is a video piece (Meat-eater) of someone eating meat both sexually and as a kind of spiritual experience, the last is myself masturbating a fake tentacle-penis while masked in a bondage/executioner hood made of pajama pants and handcuffed in red mittens.
This is a video piece that I created that was part of a performance piece I did entitled "Pajama Pants and Nightlight." The video was displayed on a wall opposite myself, while across the room I was performing in a costume looking at a slightly different version of this video on my phone.
Flamingo, Puppyhood, Zippers, Frog Slippers, Gay Aliens, Betty Boop, Smiles, Semi-Nudity, Pinning, Cuddling, and a Blinking Buffalo Heart. This is a performance that I did as part of my spring 2017 MFA review.
(2017) - Two unicorns wash upon a deserted island, and quickly the whole thing becomes a chaotic, awkward mess. This collaborative piece was created by myself and Emily Lehman.
(2017) - a beating heart, a rhythmic breathing, an anxious suffocation, a comforting warmth, an absolute love. I completed this video using some characters and objects that I had created for a performance piece that I did (Frog Slippers and my Buffalo Heart). I'd say this is an offshoot/borderline continuation of that performance. The melding of characters, bodies, and a relationship is the crux of this video, with the juxtaposition of imagery creating a surreal puzzle that slips in and out of coherence.