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Surrender, Dorothy


Live performance, four-channel video, sound, steel, aluminum, fabric, altered telephone with sound


Surrender, Dorothy explores the porousness between illusion and reality, truth and deceit, art and artifice. The work references the ways in which the constructed realities of theater and cinema can bleed into our real-life experiences. It also investigates the ways in which “reality” can become a site for manipulation and abuse of power, resulting in disorientation and an erosion of certainty.


The work references the illusionistic history of cinema and custom-made circular projection screens associate the movies to a portal, worm hole, or crystal ball. A 1950s Western Electric telephone offers visitors the semblance of connection to reality, but instead shares a vocal recording that foreshadows the live vocals of the performance.


The work can be understood in three parts: Part I - pre-performance; Part II - performance; and Part III - post-performance. A text is slowly revealed through the performance, its significance ambiguous - was this a repressed truth being uncovered or an added layer of manipulation and distortion?

This work was first presented as part of the 2024 MFA Thesis Exhibition at Tufts University Art Galleries. The live performance featured performers Lu Adami and Anamarie Edwards, edible sculptures, costumes, masks, and live vocals.

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