There is a Devil Inside of Me (work in progress)
There is a Devil Inside of Me is a multi-media investigation of the mythologies explored in Ana Medieta's work and biography. The project utilizes my own journey towards understanding Mendieta, attempting to locate her significance in my practice and in the sphere of contemporary and feminist art. Much of Mendieta’s work was based off of the goddesses and symbols embedded in the culture of the indigenous people of Cuba. At the time of her death, she was working on a series based off the myths of the Taíno people who had used the San Ambrosio caves as a spiritual site. My photographs in these same caves revisit Mendieta’s sketches and writings and are linked to her realized works: the Rupestrian Sculptures. The Rupestrian Sculptures were created in the summer of 1981 in Escaleras de Jaruco, a State park roughly one hour outside of Havana. Officially, these sculptures are reported as having been destroyed, due to both weathering of the porous limestone and the quarrying of this for building materials. Not sure of what to expect, I ventured to the Escaleras Jaruco and was amazed at not only being able to locate the remote caves but also to find a number of the sculptures still intact, some having weathered the past 31 years better than others. I photographed these works and shot video, which will culminate as a short documentary-style piece about my journey in search of this work, and calling to question the fallacies of what has been reported about her, her work and her untimely death.
this project has been made with the generous support and assistance from the Canada Council for the Arts
Variations, Video Clip from Live Performance, Agape Enterprise, 3 minutes, 2012
Sometime between 3:30am and 5:30am in the morning on September 8, 1985, Ana Mendieta “went out the window" of her 34th floor New York City apartment. She fell 33 stories until her body contacted the roof of the 1-story deli beneath her window. She died on impact. Mendieta was 36 years old at the time of her death. Her husband, minimalist sculptor Carl Andre, was tried and acquitted of murder. Andre remains the sole witness to the events of that night.
27 years after the incident, there have been numerous efforts to discover the truth. In this performance, I take on the role of director, working with 2 actors (Corey Tazmania and Niall Powderly) to re-enact three possible scenarios of what occurred on the night of Ana Mendieta’s death. These are based on contradictory statements made by Andre to the 911 operator, to the police, and in a 2011 New Yorker interview.