Love and Anguish + Headless Hunter TONIGHT
Tonight is the opening of Love and Anguish at FRED Wildlife Refuge, the art exhibition curated by Free Sheep Foundation for City Arts Festival. The roster includes some of my favorite local artists, including Steven Miller and Amanda Manitach, both of whom I have written about previously on this blog.
From the press release:
Free Sheep Foundation present a visual meditation on the crossing of boundaries. Loosely based in the writings of George Bataille, Love & Anguish: Collected Acts of Transgression includes work from 13 local and national artists whose practices embrace acts, as well as images, of transgression.
Black Sheep Book Arts, the newly established publishing arm of Free Sheep Foundation is proud to partner with NYC-based Publicide for our first release “Headless Hunter,” printed in a numbered edition of 66, with an introductory essay by DK Pan and Nko, and including works from all participating artists. BSBA has also curated 4 works from Seattle based writers C. Davida Ingram, Amanda Manitach, Emily Pothast, and Don Wallingford. The first 13 zines be sold for $66, all proceeds going directly to participating artists. After the first 13 zines are sold, the rest will be available for free.
The artist reception at FRED Wildlife Refuge will feature a ritual reading, The Headless Occupation. Hosted by Black Sheep Book Arts, there will be 6 readers, special uninvited guests, Frenet Branca, and a very loud noise.
“The ultimate development of knowledge is questioning. We can’t endlessly defer to answers.. to knowledge… and knowledge finally opens a void. At the summit of knowledge, knowledge stops. I yield, and everything’s vertigo.” – Georges Bataille, ‘Guilty’
My contribution to Headless Hunter is a poem titled Song For Chhinnamasta, an invocation of the Hindu goddess who severs her own head in self-sacrifice and offers her life-giving blood to her devotees.
The worship of Chhinnamasta—familiar to adherents of Tibetan Buddhism as Chhinnamunda Vajrayogini—is not something to be taken lightly, and is rare in India among all but the most hardcore, world-renouncing yogis. Nevertheless, there is much to be taken from the image of this goddess for any artist who continually engages in the autoerotic ritual of creative self-sacrifice.
It is with the latter goal in mind that I will be invoking the Headless Goddess tonight at the reading, which begins promptly at 7:30 p.m. at FRED Wildlife Refuge. There will be an opening reception from 6 to 9, followed by a party until 1 am.