men and god / A Series of Headlong Experiments, 2016Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
"men and god" refers to the collected exhibitions and experiments I created in Headlong Dance Theater's emerging artist incubator program known as Headlong Performance Institute. these works do their job by telling and showing. these multimedia performances take a stab at photorealistic performance via acts of hyper-autobiography and the use of explicit primary sources from my past and the past of my ancestors. "men and god" probes the meaning and place of faith in this era of frail neofuturistic relationships. the specifics: it asks an audience member to don my clothing and play an 8-bit video game through my life — amid the sparkling faces of my mother and sisters — as my father yells through speakers about his plans/apologies to leave the family. it is a personal odyssey through suburban opulence and anguish.
it asks the audience to bear witness as the young, jewish performer before them carries hundreds of pounds of physical and cultural weight back and forth across the stage (á la the staircase of death)> while Siri reads neo-nazi forum threads > while a virile German march song plays > while a nazi flag waves proudly projected in my path.
it asks the audience to experience abraham and isaac and god as men each following the commandments of one another, even as they sacrifice themselves to prove their faith in one another. it ends as the holy-vhs cassette is broken and isaac is bound in its tape to be slaughtered. and then, as isaac marches triumphantly into a computer generated mountain-range created out of abraham’s own motion capture movements, he breaks down into pixels.
Background video: "Chanukah with the Schulman Family" recorded by my father, Bryan Schulman, 2009 & “Reflection” by Ian MacLarty
Audio: "A father's last remarks, words of Bryan Schulman" recorded by Logan Schulman, 2011
Created by Logan Schulman, 2016