Archive for the ‘Art’ Category

SOLD!

Sunday, August 13th, 2017

at Mr Darcy’s Opening Night​

curated by http://crystal-barbre.com

Current inspirations:
http://www.clockworkart.com
http://reddwalitzki.com

Shutting down this mailing list!

Friday, April 14th, 2017

Thank you to everyone who has been keeping up with my meanderings via this blog list. I don’t use this blog for public posts much anymore, so I am shutting this portion of my list down. I will continue to send mails when I update the neevita.net main site. Please join my Patreon to keep up with personal and behind-the-scenes posts in the future, at http://patreon.com/courtnee

Take care of you,

Courtnee Fallon Rex

Traveler, and Doer of Things

Fight

Friday, November 25th, 2016

As I sit here speed dialing the fucking government as a last ditch harm reduction and pressure tactic I am thinking a lot about how much our methods for protecting and advocating for the vulnerable are going to have to change. And I am thinking of how long that’s actually been the case.

I will not ‘wait and see’.

I will not ‘give him a chance to lead’.

I will not fall in line with this latest example of our normalized fucking insanity, or the compulsion to pretend what is about to happen isn’t what is happening.

Make art that feels fucking scary.

Make time and space for your people.

Brush up on CPR, first aid, de-escalation, self defense — then use those skills to help others.

Revisit basic survival techniques, and things like how to change a tire — then use those skills to help others.

Fund immigration, LBGT, health care, and anti-racist orgs.

Utilize encrypted, decentralized communication methods.

Pay attention to POC organizers and activists. Contribute, and follow their lead.

Protest.

Ignore the attacker; be present with the victim. Most times, this will be enough. Be prepared, for the times it may not be.

Divest from relying on the militarized police state to help you or keep you safe.

Rest. Whenever. You can. Be creative; Snatched moments are better than nothing.

Google alert your local representatives, and CALL THEM to hold them accountable.

Do the inner work you need to do to support yourself through the discomfort and fear. Prioritize this highly. Have your own back.

I fight with my pen, my phone calls, my local political involvement.
I fight in the street with my fist in the air and tending to wounded.
I fight with my freely given cigarettes and my freely given skills and my freely given knowledge.
I fight by taking care of myself.
I fight with my solidarity and my travels and my artistry and by putting my future and my body on the line to resist this impending holocaust.

If you can’t stomach doing all that yourself, THAT IS OK; support the living fuck out of those of us who can.

There is a lot of judgement floating around regarding how best to show up for this time in history. Fact is: We need our quiet ones (not to be confused with silent), too. We need our funders and our snitches and our safehouses and our people who remain under the radar.

Bottom line: this shit is here, now, and a goal without a plan is just a wish. Resist the confusion. Resist the ‘I wish I knew’ and ‘I wish I could’ or ‘I wish I were brave like ____’. You belong here, now, in fucking reality.

We need you. Sharpen what you have, and fucking use it.

#bloated

Friday, June 10th, 2016

I notice my body changing.

It happened in my 20’s also, in a specific shift, when I went from being sedentary to active.

This time, it’s the other way around. Things are softer and they are settling. I have begun to show my age. I notice it, especially, during the times in my cycle when I’m bloated and retaining water.

I’m so fucking thankful that I reached this stage in my life having done the work I needed to do not to be crushed by this hyperawareness. Long ago, I thought not being young and pretty would have been just about one of the most soul crushing things imaginable.

I rarely use mirrors anymore, and I am also the most well adjusted I’ve ever been.

The number of lives I’ve lead, even just so far, staggers me sometimes.

Revisiting pencil

Thursday, May 26th, 2016

Going a layer deeper in my pencil skills. I feel as though I used to have this down pretty well when I was younger, but I need different drugs now or something. These are both within the last few days.

The framed piece on the right will be given away next month. $15 and above patrons who are signed up by Monday 5/30 get their names in the hat for this one. Good luck! She’s a stunner.

Gratitude post

Thursday, April 28th, 2016

Appreciating my community today. I’m connected with some damn fine people. Here’s to you all, the strong vulnerable women, the writers, the musicians, the weirdos, the men whose souls I’ve stolen, or want to steal, the supporters, the appreciators, the activists, the carers, the empathic warriors who see what the fuck is going on. We will find our place somewhere. In the meantime, I am glad that you exist.

ROAD UPDATE: Pensacola

Sunday, February 14th, 2016

Originally posted to my Patreon community at https://www.patreon.com/posts/4413008

Mississippi: OH EM GEE you’re heeeeere omg yay! Here, have a welcome center with all kinda free camping with picnic benches and spigots and shit and a FUCKING NASA SPACE CENTER!!

Alabama: Fuck you. Welcome center closed.

Florida: Fuck you. Show us your vegetables. Then welcome center, maybe. Also toll roads. Also palm trees. Also fuck you. — Facebook

The above selfie was taken in the divey bathroom at The Handlebar last night in ‪Pensacola, where I played an impromptu show for a tiny, tiny audience in a mostly empty bar. I got a nice fueling practice in and made my beer money back.

New Orleans shaped me as a musician. It is different now; stronger. More solid. More joy in it. Truly beginning to embrace and simultaneously transmute the darkness. Thank you for that. I like being a performer. I just needed to figure out what kind of performer I am. It’s taking a while, but I think I am well on my way, now.

Here are some amazing pictures of me doing my thing, taken by an amazing man: http://neevita.net/louis-maistros-lower-decatur-street-new-orleans/

And here is some soul healing no nonsense darkness for anyone who might be feeling the pitch lonely creeping in today, or know someone who is: http://blog.neevita.net/archives/14927

I plan to be in Florida playing and enjoying the weather/beach for a bit, then moving up northish. I’ve shifted my long term plan, and will be back in WA state this summer rather than heading all the way up to the NE. I need to see a doctor about a few things and get my motorcycle sold.

Keep Going is a year old today. It is an album I released last valentines day about healing, heartbreak, patriarchy, sexism and rape culture, which is surprisingly soothing and, if I may say so, well-crafted. It’s well suited for the day particularly if valentines gives you the intense desire to side eye the fuck out of everything.

Http://courtneefallonrex.net

In a somewhat fitting turn of events, on the same day as Keep Going’s first birthday, Wounded was played on That Indie Thing with Rob on sinwebradio.com! As far as I know, this is my first radio play from the album. https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1182534628424252

Also, Reverbnation keeps sending me emails complaining that my ranks are slipping. So, this seems like a good time to mention that there’s a pretty decent sampling of original music up there including most of my originals from Keep Going and a couple of my old ambient electronic tracks. It is representative but also not too long. If you wanna go stream ’em and give RN something happy to mail me about I wouldn’t mind. :)

I’ll be picking from my Feb 14th random pool of $15 a month and above potential art receivers and notifying the winner today. $5 and above Patrons: Also look for another Seven Deadly Days of Naked (SDDN) post in a few minutes.

Glad you’re all here with me,
-nee

Still pooping on rape culture

Thursday, January 28th, 2016

So I was told yesterday that comically centering my own nonsexual nudity in any of the constant reminders I post about my patreon existing is disingenuous, because I rail against rape culture.Mmmkay.

I was told that it’s ok to use nudity in my art, which I have done for over 20 years, but it’s not ok to make a joke about posting boobs on patreon so haha sign up.

Mmhmm.

I was told that harnessing my own agency and inviting people to support me in a way that ever centers that portion of my body of work devalues everything else about me.

*files nails*

A man, who has been at times clearly conflicted with his own attraction to me, which is what he centered when stating his ‘honest opinion’ about his perception of not being able to afford to see my tits (the image is public, actually, in my modeling portfolio) told me this, and claimed to be trying to point out what he viewed as internalized sexism.

*yawn*

He told me I couldn’t have it both ways, that I couldn’t critique and work to transform a culture which seeks to objectify and shame my body without my consent, and ever consent to being gazed upon with my nipples showing and having the audacity to suggest that it’s possible to be financially supported in that.

*side eye*

He told me this in response to the first post I’ve penned in almost two years in which I centered my nudity, much less in good humor, and, even though he is a fucking therapist, failed to recognize how deeply vulnerable and brave of a step that reclaiming was for me in my healing.

*scowl*

This is an aspect of rape culture. That women are not allowed their own pride, agency, or to make money with their bodies, as long as any old man who gets a boner doesn’t have free license to objectify her any time he wants.

It’s a part of rape culture to hold the belief that a womans figure, nudity, sexuality is consumable only if she’s giving it away freely, and doesn’t expect compensation unless she sits down and shuts up.

I am officially on record as not here for that shit.

I’m not here for being shamed and diminished by some creepweasel fingerwagging shitbiscuit just as I’m rising from ashes and reclaiming an openness about my own fucking body  — an openness that has brought me joy and exhileration and freedom and makes me laugh and allows for me to return to a more complete expression that I’d long since lost to fucking trauma.

I am not here for shaming nude artists of any form, including my friends who are porn stars and sex workers, or even remotely implying that their willful participation in that negates their stances or validity as rape culture critics/consent culture advocates.

So you can thank this asshole for the verocity of the flood of nudity that is likely to become present in my immediate work.

And you can sign up to support that work, along with my book, my music, my neverending nomadic journey, at http://patreon.com/courtnee

*sips tea*

Process of a digitally edited watercolor

Wednesday, October 14th, 2015

This is a 6 inch by 4 inch watercolor postcard. I used watercolor pens, tea, ballpoint and pencil. I used the above self-photograph image as a reference.

IMG_7562

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7562-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7562-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7562-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7562.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> I started with pencil to sketch the basics


IMG_7563

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7563-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7563-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7563-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7563.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> Then began adding watercolor pen to the dry paper

IMG_7564http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7564-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7564-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7564-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7564.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

IMG_7565http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7565-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7565-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7565-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7565.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

IMG_7566http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7566-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7566-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7566-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7566.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />


IMG_7567

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7567-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7567-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7567-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7567.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> Now time to start adding tea and blending

IMG_7568http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7568-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7568-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7568-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7568.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

IMG_7569http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7569-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7569-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7569-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7569.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />

IMG_7570http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7570-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7570-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7570-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7570.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" />


Adding ballpoint

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7571-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7571-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7571-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7571.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> Adding ballpoint

IMG_7572

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7572-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7572-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7572-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7572.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> Adding more watercolor

IMG_7573

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7573-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7573-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7573-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7573.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> At this point, I realized my facial dimensions were off. I had made my eyes too small, and too close together. I tried shading and highlighting to make up for the issues.

IMG_7574

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7574-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7574-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7574-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7574.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> At this point I realized that not only were my eyes too far apart, but my mouth was too small and too low, also. These are very typical issues for me to have when I am working from a portrait reference.

IMG_7576

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576.jpg 1152w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> Once finished, with added highlightsI knew I wouldn’t want to use this as my avatar representation as I’d planned. Though it’s a good painting, it just didn’t look enough like me. The eyes were too small, too close, and the mouth was too small and far away. In addition, the head/hat was a little wonky, too.

IMG_7576 adjusted

http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-adjusted-768x1024.jpg 768w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-adjusted-261x348.jpg 261w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-adjusted-688x917.jpg 688w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/IMG_7576-adjusted.jpg 1536w" sizes="(max-width: 550px) 100vw, 550px" /> But then I remembered I have digital art skills too, even though I’ve never used them to fix watercolors. So I adjusted it in Photoshop. :)

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

Friendly neighborhood reminder: With the exception of odd, inconsistent jobs as I travel, I survive directly on crowdfunding. Patreon is how I eat, write, create, and Keep Going. If you follow my posts/activities please consider signing up to support me there.

Http://patreon.com/courtnee

Adios, Austin!

Thursday, September 3rd, 2015

Leaving with an expanded resume, a touched heart, my hands full of new helpful tech, and a head full of ideas.

Also I learned that sometimes there ARE good reasons, to water dirt.

Get updates at http://patreon.com/courtnee

24 hours

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

The artwork I’ve made in the last 24 hours. About 12.5×6″ Ballpoint, ink, watercolor.

From top, my friends:
Fedora El Morro, Eliza Skeffington, and Dreadful Jonquil.

For Kirsten

Saturday, August 1st, 2015

I told you so

There is nothing
So precious
As a sisterhood
That softly cautions
Of ones ability
To disregard
Our profound knowing
Instead, to fill
His jagged caverns
Brimmed in untapped dark
With the naive light
Of our hopeful
Imagination

CHB: Week one

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

I have survived the first week at camp, and it was basically spectacular.

And then I survived the hours it just took to write about my first week of camp, too.

Read about my epic adventures at http://patreon.com/courtnee

Let me get Pretty for you.

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

Friday, February 27th, 2015

Last call for:

Pay what you want Keep Going (digital version): http://courtnee.bandcamp.com

Be entered into a drawing to win a free copy of limited edition Keep Going CD by signing up to support me at patreon by Feb 28th ($15 or more a month) http://patreon.com/courtnee

As of March 1, Keep Going will be $10 to download.

<3

Saturday, February 14th, 2015

Thinking about becoming a patron of mine? Sign up at the $15 a month level or higher before the first of March and I’ll enter you into a special drawing for one of the limited edition versions of Keep Going. Also, my bi-annual art giveaway for the same support level is coming up April 2.

My Patreon campaign: http://patreon.com/courtnee

The album: https://courtnee.bandcamp.com/album/keep-going

Stay Focused. Keep Going.

Sunday, February 1st, 2015

Been trying to narrow roots down lately. You know, to save my sanity. Been thinking on this a bit, and I’ve come to the conclusion currently that all the shit I’m mad about and think needs changing leads back to two things: Capitalism and Patriarchy.

So, if considering the main sources of our current social problems can be traced back to Capitalism (classism, ablism, racism, production-based human worth) and Patriarchy (sexism, rape culture, devaluing of bodily sovereignty, feminine ideals, and care work), would it then suppose that the root of what we must shed and transmute in our social evolution is simply: Toxic Masculinity (supremacy, domination, control, emotional disconnection, and power based upon fear of that wide spectrum of physical and emotional violence)?

And how is it that people generally wake to their realities of these issues, even when they’ve already known they are against the patriarchy and or capitalist ways of operating?; They then suffer a period of deeply adopting toxic masculinity themselves to manifest the ‘power’ needed to stand in their resistance without being annihilated while in transition. And some will never make that transition.

Ghandi was a sexist rape apologist. Mother Teresa was against violence unless that violence attacked the sovereignty of women’s bodies. The toxic masculinity permeated these people as well, people who vastly and fundamentally inspired and changed the world and are widely considered saints, superhuman. But organized religion, the cause of which so many wars and so many saints have rallied behind, in and of itself is based upon what? Toxic masculinity, that’s what.

And here we still are, dealing with the deep rooted tendrils of the same old shit.

Every once in a while we erupt in toxic masculine (and deeply cathartic) violence, making a tiny baby step by forcing the patriarchal empire into changing the rules a little in order to make that toxic masculine a little less obvious (see: The civil rights movement). But it, that toxicity, is always here – piled over our grief, stuffed in the corners of our coping mechanisms, whitewashed away by the lies of our generally accepted history. For centuries of conditioning and ancestry, it is deeply, fundamentally, here.

I wonder that toxic masculinity is a game that is subconsciously perceived as must being played in order to survive this world, much less overcome and thrive. For all people, including children.

And I wonder that this here is the impetus, the toxic masculine that goes beyond patriarchy which centers around gender and seniority of male lineage, beyond capitalism which leverages these teachings for the gain of few at the expense of many, rather than simply another symptom, of why we’re all so royally fucked.

Beauty in the Breakdown

Saturday, January 24th, 2015

I had come to the title for this piece while it was in progress a couple weeks ago.

It’s fitting that I finally finished it today, which was largely spent processing through a complex and incredibly irrational emotional trigger.

I figured it out, and figured a few side notes out, too. Like that my ex now represents abandonment for me rather than my mother — he shows up when my little is feeling desperate and lonely — and no matter how grown up I get or how professional I act or how ‘correct’ the response is, it hurts and is deeply scary as fuck when someone I care about doesn’t seem to care too much about losing access to our intimacy.

While I was finishing this watercolor, I sobbed and wept a lot, and I sipped through the last of the discontinued tea that marked intense bonding and sense memories from my last romantic relationship. It felt like the right time to officially complete that part of my life.

These hideous and beautiful and incredibly uncomfortable processes helped me figure out what was happening with me today, and what needed to be done to balance it. Hint: I’d forgotten an important step in completing a grief transition.

Always comes down to that, doesn’t it.

IMG_5547http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_5547-550x760.jpg 550w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_5547-252x348.jpg 252w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_5547-688x951.jpg 688w" sizes="(max-width: 741px) 100vw, 741px" />

Say Something

Saturday, January 10th, 2015

“Some are quick to use the crabs in a bucket trope, but it’s important to remember that crabs were never meant to be piled in a bucket.” – Ryan Dalton

Fuck your fucking bucket. Fuck your fucking fear. Fuck you for trying to keep me in it with you. Fuck you for trying to hold me down and stop me from climbing out. Fuck you for trying to erase me and minimize me and manipulate me away from my truth. Fuck you for giving me no other choice but to leave you behind.

Fuck you for not coming with me.

IMG_4280http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_4280-550x411.jpg 550w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_4280-460x344.jpg 460w, http://journal.neevita.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/IMG_4280-688x514.jpg 688w" sizes="(max-width: 1024px) 100vw, 1024px" />

Related: Rock Lobster: Finding Home.

20150111-165127.jpg

20150111-165141.jpg

Today’s work

Monday, January 5th, 2015

New watercolor in progress. Done for today. Now on to music.

A. M.

Wednesday, December 10th, 2014

A little birdie told me to Keep Going

Tuesday, December 9th, 2014

Photography by Chris Clark
Post Processing by Courtnee Fallon Rex
Ink by Mike of All Star Tattoo, Tacoma

It was time for me to buy some art, myself.

Sunday, December 7th, 2014

Arms are inked, now. Sleeves: Inevitable.

Lovingly done by Mike at All Star Tattoo of Tacoma on a gut feeling, best tattooing experience I’ve yet had. Recommended. Thank you again, Tacoma.

For reference, this was what I was doing with my arms back in 2008.

Keep going.

Full Circle Zita

Saturday, October 25th, 2014

My signature (nude) aerial silks piece started as a homage to sexual relationship, to not giving up on loving someone, even when you get bucked off. The act began as a physical illustration of the struggle to shed the defenses that bind us, finding strength in being vulnerable, and how sex can contribute to the art of self discovery.

This character is established earlier in the show as someone who is timid and quiet – until they find themselves seemingly alone with their obsession.

The piece morfed meaning, and genders (I now know I am non-binary) over the years as I performed it, representing first a specific relationship, then love and connection as a whole, and then my relationships within, including the one I have with my sexuality, and lastly the one I have with my darkness — which I performed on black silks rather than red.

When I first started performing the piece, and for quite some time thereafter, I had to get to the green room right away when I came off the silks, because the wave of what I now know as grief was so strong I would convulse and sob uncontrollably.

Often the deep sobbing would start while I was still curled up inside the silks, and I’d come down as quickly as I could, choking down a river. When I was safe I would completely loose my shit, and something totally overwhelming would rip through my body like a hurricane, and last for extended periods of time.

Sometimes, when I was lucky, there would be a puzzled someone or two there to hold me.

Though I’d come to many theories about it, and over time that response softened, I had no real idea why it was happening.

Due in part to this reaction, I didn’t perform the piece often, perhaps once a year or two. The opportunities to perform it always coincided with a big level up in my personal growth, often cauterizing what had been a long psychic process.

Each time I performed it, the dramatic swell into my big drop felt angry, and forceful, and nearly always, sexual. It represented for me both what I valued about my personality and what I felt deeply ashamed of. That inevitable struggle for power that would result in me being batted away and hurting.

Now I know why. Now I see what I was trying to tell myself.

The following video cannot do this act justice. People who saw this in person were transformed along with me, and due in part to the nudity, the opportunity was rare. Zita was something special, this act was something special, and I am honored to have had the courage and the support to have done this in my life.

Performed June 9, 2010, four years before I wrote about my epiphanies regarding rape culture, for “There must be something in the Air”, a benefit for Versatile Arts, the aerial gym I call home.

The music is from the Batman Begins soundtrack by Hans Zimmer and James Newton Howard. Video footage courtesy of Block My Eye Films, which I edited over one insomniatic night.