Performances as parties are a revolution against pragmatic notions of mere safety for marginalized groups, instead imagining places for utopian ideals to be realized. Arising from my own need for diverse traditions as a transgender individuals, I use play and drag to create rituals.
Several performances subvert the tropes of gender reveal parties, like pastel tinted cakes, balloons, and binary gendered party favors, as a way of heightening our awareness of the absurdity of gender. Other performances are closer to private magic rituals in which I peel fruit and sew it back together. Often these rituals are theatrical, with costumes changes and songs.
My performance work is informed by the linguistic theory of Third Space, as a site of identity and community realized through language and communication, and I am invested in the idea of a queer utopia. Queer individuals must define homes, work places, bodies, and third spaces differently and out of a more dire necessity. I aim to build these utopias and third spaces through performance.
Laurence Myers Reese is an artist in Norman, OK. His practice focuses on the queer body and social rituals of transformation and identity, using performance, video, watercolor and textiles.
In the past year, Reese has exhibited at KillJoy Collective (Portland, OR), Front/Space (Kansas City, MO), and the Center for Contemporary Art (Santa Fe, NM).
In 2017 he received a Spotlight grant from the Oklahoma Visual Arts Coalition for his project “RE: Season 10 Audition,” a film documenting the creation of an audition tape for RuPaul’s Drag Race. This premiered in May 2017 at East Central University (Ada, OK) for Momentum Ada, a festival of film and new media, with keynote speaker John Waters.
l.myers.reese (at) gmail (dot) com