"This is a manifesto.
A test of the urgency broadcast system and a declaration of identity, clarifying my position. As an artist? A woman? A black American? A philanthropist? A nosey neighbor? A writer? A reveler? A philosopher?
Well, I am a socialite brokering the magnetism of my personality to start a conversation. I use this impulse as a measuring stick; a guideline to determine whether the shit I deliver is bull or brilliant. Audience-as-material, they are the 'second opinion' for an accurate diagnosis. A gallery full of peanuts, (bomb)shells crunching underfoot, Texas Roadhouse style. But this not just about living a glamorous life of real pit barbecue and the stroking of a magnificent ego, it is a practice of sharing. An acknowledgement of the universality of performance. A celebration of mark making through action - politicized, historicized, racialized, and laid to the side. My simultaneous attraction and repulsion to time based performance work is a reflection of the ever shifting nature of cultural roles. I have often fancied myself the star of the show, or at the very least an omnipotent administrator, orchestrating and stepping back to admire the handiwork. But my efforts are typically thwarted by the unpredictability of the viewer. Somehow my practice is not a dictatorship(!). Could democracy be a formal choice? Either way, as a forever cut-up, contrarian and questioner, my general suspicion compels me to investigate this alleged relationship between artist + viewer, performer + audience and/or well-intentioned hopefuls + boo hissers. Algebraic equations for interaction: solve for “x”.
It’s the space between these connections that compose a transformative substance. In one instance it's fixed to rigidity, while in another it becomes a gooey mash rolled into a multitude of perspectives. Ultimately, it's the confusion that brings clarity. Documentation becomes an on-purpose accident that muddles the positioning of “who is who?” and "what the hell is going on here?" There? Everywhere? I, The Couch Surfer (or InflatableMattress Loafer) became an audience of one to 13 performances of domesticity, while a Facebook feedoffers time stamped commentary on the project itself. Narcissism is indulged via a suite of self-portraits, each sitter donning a white paint suit - a costume of Kenyanessto be enacted and discarded at their prerogative. During this performance a street intersection becomes the unexpected stage for another viewer to venture, "who's zoomin’ who" - the wisdom of Aretha Franklin in full effect. "Take another look, tell me boy."
In my world a Walmart in Wallingford, Connecticut is a mega Kunsthalle, double ended zippers are sculptural material and retail shelving is a pedestal. My studio practice is an analog digital hybrid influenced by a personal history that privileges the introduction of call waiting, the loaded cache of the pager, the advent of text messaging, social media and streaming video as pieces to the same puzzle. It’s Meta as material, and sculptural form in the virtual space."
Artist’s link: I've introduced a developing performance persona (http://www.shapeshifterlab.com/portfolio/nov-23-sack-of-stars-the-vocal-stylings-of-cheeky-lashae/)
started carrying a #whitemaninmypocket (http://thehappyblackgirl.com/2014/01/02/kenya-got-a-white-man-in-her-pocket-2/)
And I am currently looking for a white couch (http://kenyaworkspace.blogspot.com/2013/09/fuckyourcouch.html?m=1)