Kathie Halfin (Brooklyn, NY, USA): Labor Of Love_II

  • watch: 27th June2020 at 10pm UTC
  • duration: 30 min

As an immigrant I carry layers and histories from several places. My work is consumed by the question of the belonging. I ask what does it mean for me to be a part of the collective in the country where I wasn’t born especially when I have several stories that are often conflicting with each other. There is a burning subject the one of collective distrust of protests and solidarity that I want to address in my performance especially in times of protests here in United States when people gather to protest oppression and express solidarity in support of Black Lifes Matter. Generations who lived during Soviet times still suffer from luck of solidarity and deep disbelief in a collective effort. In the 1960s a human rights movement began to emerge in the USSR. Human rights activists were subjected to a broad range of repressive measures. My generation still heard these slogans of fake solidarity and hopeful future but everyone knew it is a lie that is told to control people. My performance lasts for 30 min. It is the rebellious act against the hopeless lack of solidarity and defied collective agency that I inherited while living in USSR. In my performance I will stand near Brooklyn Museum, the place where I went to protest recently. I will wear red overall and an unbaked clay mask. I will put unbaked clay on my body as if it is a shield and a defence mechanism that I developed. Then I will remove the shield and slowly uncover my mouth and eyes and tell the story of protests in Russia. I will start deforming the mask to transform myself and change my identity as I step into collective trauma an healing process.

BIO: Kathie Halfin is an artist, performer and educator based in New York. She holds a Masters in Fine Arts from the School Of Visual Arts. Halfin’s practice spans performance, sculptural installation, video exploring the experiences of migration, belonging and gender. Halfin’s projects examine migration as a personal and cross-cultural experience that transforms histories and systems. Kathie Halfin showed her work at the Satellite Art Fair: Performance Is Alive 2019, Woodstock Artists Association and Museum 2019, NARS Foundation 2019, White Box Performance Series 2019, Immigrant Artist Biennial Soft Launch: Assembly Room 2019, Itinerant Performance Festival: Smack Mellon 2019, Knockdown Center: Sunday Series 2018, Art In Odd Places Performance Festival 2018, Clemente Soto Velez Cultural Center 2018, Bronx Museum AIM Biennial 2017, and the A.I.R. Gallery 2016 among others. Kathie received fellowships at Wassaic Project Residency, Bronx Museum AIM Program, and Vermont Studio Center. ARTIST’S WEBSITE