Wednesday, 1 August 2012

Project 200 – The Missus/Misses Series (2012)

Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 1: The Pied Piper Pipe Bomber (photo by Alan Parker)

 

Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 2: Let them eat cake (photo by Alan Parker)
 


Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 3: Lady exhibiting Satirical Fruit Salad (photo by Alan Parker)

Project 200 – The Missus/Misses Series (2012)


An independent three-part public performance intervention series in numerous public spaces of Grahamstown.

Created, choreographed, designed and performed by Gavin Krastin

We cannot deny that this town was born out of blood and war during the Colonial Wars between the British, amaXhosa and Khoisans at some stage.
– Makana Mayor Zamuxolo Peter, public address at the Grahamstown bicentennial celebrations, 2012.

No place has played so important a part in the history of British South Africa as Grahamstown, from which much that is good and prosperous in the Eastern Province has had its rise.
– Professor George Cory on Grahamstown’s centenary, 1912.


It was for the very reason expressed by Mayor Peter that the day of the Grahamstown Parade (18 February 2012), marking Grahamstown’s bicentenary, was not referred to, or marketed, as a celebration, but rather as a time to “reflect and imagine”. However, regardless of the chosen terminology, one cannot circumvent the historical events initiated by the colonising settlers in Grahamstown from 1812, which were catalytic in the manifestation of the racially charged paradigm shift in South Africa to come, and from which we are still recovering.

When one approaches celebrating (or in this case, reflecting and acknowledging – or ‘un-celebrating’) spaces and land in South Africa one carefully balances on a double-edged blade, as how do we reflect and imagine without forgetting and confronting the reality of the historical situation. And why should one negate this harsh reality?

Project 200 – The Missus/Misses Series, an on-going work, seeks to query the tension of forgetting and remembering, celebrating and lamenting, the violent reality of the colonisation of Grahamstown (and the Eastern Cape). It poses the question, can one, or how does one, celebrate and positively imagine a space that originated from bloodshed?

What follows is a series of photographic documentation of public performance interventions, or ‘bicentennial un-celebration events’, at multiple specific Grahamstown locations.



Missus/Misses 1: The Pied Piper Pipe Bomber

February 2012, Drostdy Arch, New Street and Church Square, Grahamstown
Photography by Alan Parker


Missus/Misses 2: Let them eat cake

March 2012, Beaufort Street and Bathurst Street, Grahamstown
Photography by Alan Parker

Missus/Misses 3: Lady exhibiting Satirical Fruit Salad
July 2012, 1820 Settlers National Monument, Grahamstown
Photography by Alan Parker



Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 1: The Pied Piper Pipe Bomber (photo by Alan Parker)



Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 2: Let them eat cake (photo by Alan Parker)
 


Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 3: Lady exhibiting Satirical Fruit Salad (photo by Alan Parker)
 


Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 1: The Pied Piper Pipe Bomber (photo by Alan Parker)


Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 2: Let them eat cake (photo by Alan Parker)

Gavin Krastin in Missus/Misses 3: Lady exhibiting Satirical Fruit Salad (photo by Alan Parker)

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