PolyHOMEfull. Performance. Audio Visual Work. Texts.
Kind of like the idea of polyamory–no one home can take care of all your needs and will probably fail or fall short in certain ways, but many different homes over the course of your lifetime, or the course of a period of time, can all be temporary spaces and places of home and refuge which provide difference and have various gifts and beauties to them. For a while polyhomeful was really part of my existence because of work and i realized that it was also having a relationship to polyamory and helping me to decentralize my needs of my “real home”, or rather my “real homes”: 1. Physical Home (like, place that I am registered) 2. Familial Home (place(s) my family lives and 3. Spiritual Home (Imagine Place or perhaps Time which is not exactly a either of those but a feeling which makes me feel in deep connected relationship with the natural world) so that i could fight some of the “homesickness”
Rings of Home as Stage
Think concentric circles, each circle is a home, a stage, a performance. The first home is our skin bag, our “body”, the skin we are in. Inside this skin we live and we perform. We can transform it, we can mold it and work with it, but it is a place in which we live and in which we perform our selves. The second home is our clothing. Inside this clothing we live and we perform. We perform our genders and our identities. We wear the labor, stories, migration paths, the signifiers, the cultural appropriations of those fibers, artistic imaginings and ideas. In these clothes we perform and we live. Third Home is the bed or not bed we wake up in. It may be a royal bed, it may be a cot, it may be a cement floor; it is most certainly changing and dynamic over the course of our lifetime. Inside this bed we may invite lovers, we may practice our sexuality, our dreaming, our selfcare, our cravings. It is a place that we perform routines and rituals. It is a place that we can and have the possibility to perform care for ourselves and others. The fourth home is the space that contains this bed … the site of our “domesticity” … the way that we act out our private selves and perform our “privacy” in communion with others, or alone. The way that we perform care for ourselves and others … Keep thinking outwards … How does this frame of thinking about HOME and STAGE open up possibilities for both seeing the possibilities of performing care.
HOME as CHOICE, as SUITABILITY, as reflection of ECONOMIC SYSTEMS
I think a discussion about “suitability” of housing, abundance or lack of abundance of housing, choice and privilege vis a vis housing is worth discussing, eg:
— Precarious Economy of Domestic Branding: branding of our domestic lives (think the precarious economy of Airbnb or any other short term rental scheme many of us engage with and the insidious ways that it forces us to brand our most intimate space but at the same time the entire economy is only accessible to a relatively privileged “new precariat” who have access to computers, internet, and are willing to be rated and reviewed by social media. Think about these merit based schemes of the new precariat).
— what is suitable to live in? What do I need in a living space? (What is necessary for me and how is this mitigated by my already imagined ideas of what I deserve or how much access I have to what I want, either in terms of simply being taken seriously, or earning enough money. What do I seem as my “right” to my environmental footprint and how is sense of entitlement reflected in my choice of housing)
— Do I get to decide for myself what I deem suitable to live in? (think about people who choose to live in tent cities, sleep rough, sleep in cars, rather than taking advantage of shelters or other social programs, think about refugees who are told they must sleep in tent housing or detention centers while they wait adjudication of their cases)
— How much housing is “available” and how can housing be made available; who has the right to decide what is available (Think about squatting rights, think about the abundance of literal “space” with a roof and yet without access to people who would like to have a roof, think about the mattresses thrown in the street, old Ikea beds thrown on the street or in trash heaps, the over abundance of hotel rooms to people who don’t need them (free hotel rooms thrown in to vacation packages and left empty), those who choose to have empty rooms in their house or extra houses and others who are told that they cannot rent out an extra room in their house, etc …)
Full Circle … or Ouroboros
All of these themes I see as related back to performance and to stage and to home, the way that we perform our identities, both privately, and publicly, vis a vis our art, our performance of our passion, our art, which could be, is, essentially, work. If we think about what it is that we “must do” for work, this immediately brings up the questions mentioned above. What is suitable for us to live in? How much do we need to earn to have a suitable home? If we have to do some work in order to make a certain amount of money in order to live that is not what we would call art, how do we, out of a need to survive, begin to transform what we do as work into something we can think of as art? So there is this shifting relationship between work and art. And the work and the idea of what “must be done” is related to the way that we perform our identities. The way that we make choices about our homes … what homes we must live in and why and where.
i moved out of the apartment with s the other day and a little transient at the moment. i mean i have everything at exit but often change where i sleep. im fine but its been rather sad/hard to change. im still taking care of l, that hasnt changed but living with her has. i feel much happier, like it was the right decision, but its hard in any case and we are adjusting to new parent scheduling. anyway, im doing a lot of airbnb lately which kinda sucks so i always feel a bit unstable about living. J and A and I are all in exit a lot. anyway, im telling you this as back story to explain the
funny dream the other night about dad that i have to share with you.
so i was walking up this kind of dirt road, like the kind in the Hobbit. and i come upon this Hobbit house looking thing which i identify as our house … our family home. there is a window wide open and i identify this room as my room, so i crawl in through the window. but when i get inside the room, its locked from the inside with a metal latch. im a bit surprised that its locked,, but i undo the lock and go out the door into the hallway of the house. then, realizing that maybe its meant to be locked, i wiggle my hand back in the door and relock my bedroom with the metal latch.
i wander down the hall and find dad, who is putting on a kind of dress shirt for work. he says, oh hi katie, but he doesnt seem especially happy to see me, he’s kind of bitter sweet, like saying it like ive been gone a really long time and kind of mad at me for not being back, and kind of just a little annoyed or something. i notice this but dont really let it bother me in the dream.
Then dad says, come over here, and takes me down the hallway to another room, which i identify as “his room” which appears to be empty except for a cot, which i identify in retrospect as his hospice cot. everything is neat and put away and clean and i say, “oh, well, this room is empty, you could rent it out now.” (which i think has to do with renting it out like air bnb)
Then dad says, “well we could, but i just peed on the pillow………”
then the dream is over.
mom, since you are moving house now too and have had many moves since 2009 you probably get it too.
anyway. im back in berlin.