2021 trolleybuses in Kaunas funded by Lithuanian Council for Culture
the city is what we remember of it — our memories are the contextual foundations on which kaunas exists. there are so many memories that i missed as i was growing up in the uk. there is a distance and this distance makes me feel alienated. i feel like i am home. i don’t always feel that others think the same. to me, home is inside people. how can i then be home if no one remembers me? if i can’t remember myself?
Speak Lietuviškai is the sibling performance of Kalbėk English, as both these works explore my transnational identity as a person who grew up between Lithuania and England.
Every day for 20 consecutive days, I rode on Kaunas’ trolleybuses until I had been on all routes twice each (10 x 2), connecting with other travellers through language, memories, reflections, photographs and other forms of immaterial touch.
I chose the setting of the trolleybus as when I was a child in Kaunas, I’d often get on the trolleybus to school but instead of getting off, I would stay there for the whole day, riding in circles and reading. By returning to this space, I wanted to activate my context-dependent memory and the language within it.
I made a poem each day as an offering to the collective memories of Kaunas’ residents. These poems were written on paper made from the water of the confluence of Neris and Nemunas rivers and buried across Kaunas.
Through this performance ritual, I bound myself to the collective memories of the people of Kaunas and began to (re)home myself within them.
2018 The Others, London 2022 POST gallery, Kaunas Picture Gallery 2022 Kėdainiai Bus Station, as part of FORMOS’22
I begin with 5 blank pages and 5 ink cartridges that puncture the bottom of the container of water suspended above the writing altar.
i. I take the first ink cartridge and water begins falling on the page.
ii. I write continuously until the cartridge is empty.
iii. repeat until all the cartridges are empty and all the pages are full.
the writer cleanses is a 5-hour durational performance that centres the action of cleansing through stream-of-consciousness writing as a way to confront personal trauma and disable the dimension of shame by making private domains public.
Inside the blur of the disappearing text, I invite audiences to ‘read’ the text I’m producing through the physical process of writing and linger with me at the border of my inside, swimming between the words and water on the page.
The pages left after the performance transcend the form of a text and capture the time I spent with each page. ‘Reading’ these pages gives direct access to the thoughtspace of writing them, reducing the distance between idea and expression to more accurately reflect the underlying intent and emotions.
Language always has the potential to be corrupted and altered due to words’ incomplete performance of meaning and our individual understandings and associations. This way of writing attempts to circumvent these misalignments to seek a more precise connection between writer and reader.
2018 Rich Mix, London
I begin dressed all in white, with a tub full of red wine, a white towel to stand on and a sponge
i. take all-white clothes off. ii. bathe in red wine iii. put all-white clothes back on, allowing them to stain the fabric
In the Waters of River Möbius delves into the theme of addiction. Envisioning the state of dependence as an invisible river in the shape of a Möbius strip, a hyperobject that flows around us constantly, luring bodies for a sip to trap them in its endlessly circulating current.
This is what the addiction I witness around me and within me feels like. Something ever-present and easy to dip your toes into, but almost impossible to get out of once you get caught. i wanted to connect this vision with the action of staining as a mark of shame, in other words, airing my ‘dirty laundry’ in public.
By externalising and giving shape to the state of dependance, I wanted to move away from thinking of addiction as a personal shortcoming, but as a socially constructed set of circumstances that permeates us all.