Tanabata: A Spousal Adventure

Oh my gosh.  Did I tell you guys about the first real art collaboration between my husband and I?  Are you kidding me?  How did that happen?  Ok, well, trust me on this one.  If you don’t laugh at some point in the next five minutes, you might be a robot.  Take a hot bath to find out for sure.

It all started with our friends, Amie Cunat and Piotr Chizinski, who run Public Address gallery in Brooklyn, inviting us to participate in their Tanabata show.  The Japanese Tanabata festival is based around two lovers who, in the form of stars, can only see each other once a year.  You can read more about the lovers’ story here.

From the curator of the show:

In the spirit of these festivities, Public Address asked artist, architect, designer, and curator couples/collaborators to participate in TANABATA. Each couple/collaborator was invited to create a single tanabata fukinagashi, which was encouraged to reflect the work or practice of both individuals. This exhibition focuses on the intersection of two distinct personalities coming together to produce something that celebrates their special relationship and unique interpretation of the prompt.

Out first ideas centered around the traditional streamer decorations.

Our ideas went through exciting transformations, from elegant and sophisticated objects to manifestations that would make Prince blush.  (We’ll miss you buddy.  Your bare ass surrounded by yellow-webbed material is forever burned into my memories.)  Ryder pushed me into more abstract and conceptual ideas, and we landed on video as a medium.  The BEST idea was mine, of course.  We were going to strap a go-pro to his man parts and have him chase me around the house while I threw phallic shaped items at the camera all while giggling hysterically.

Flash forward to the day the video needed to be made.  We had a chat about refining the idea, and Ryder had some modifications.  Instead of inside, we’d do this outside at night.  I would wear a silver bodysuit.  Ryder would not strap a go-pro to his junk, but would wear it around his waist.  I was digging around in my art/cat/sewing/depository-of-junk room and came across a stash of small, plastic rings that each contained a colored LED light.  These would be the new projectiles.

We turned off all of the lights in the house, and went into the backyard.  Ryder strapped on a headlight and the go-pro.  I twisted a fanny pack to the front and filled it with LEDs.  We ran and ran and giggled out little hearts out.  The results turned out way better than we expected, and it even looks like we’re traveling through stars!  Funny side note: Our next door neighbor’s back porch light was on when we started filming, but turned off by the time we finished.  We’re pretty sure he and or his wife watched us and giggled too.

Anyway!  Here are the results.  I don’t know why we don’t collaborate more often.  Enjoy.

Artist and videographer, sort of.

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