Culture Club: Listening to Lizzie Borden and Jessie Rovinelli / 4
I understand about body image. I could never have stripped with anyone looking at me from a distance. My strategy with “working” was to try to make regulars out of the older men and stay close and partly clothed so they couldn’t really see me. I’ve never felt comfortable naked. And you have a beautiful body. But you are a director now and were you to do camming of any kind, not only would you be recognized, it would be a label attached to you before any reckoning with the values of your work.
How do you structure your time during the pandemic?
I find myself completely losing track of it. My partner and I have started beginning each day by making the most mundane of plans so at least there’s a “schedule.” I finally started working with the local mutual aid group, too, so going out and delivering free groceries to undocumented folks gives me something resembling a “job.”
I think it is wonderful that you’re delivering groceries to the undocumented. Any kind of “reading/writing/working” in this moment may be clinging to a hope that the “future” will have a familiar shape and you’re in the present, doing the absolute and necessary.
If all goes well I’ll shoot next week. I’m thinking about the ecstatic again, it seems to be in the air for me and others, in this moment. There is something about burrowing into the self and having to drag something out of it. Last weekend we blacked out the windows in our apartment, fired up our CDJs, and DJ’d for 8 hours straight and made a tiny world, a rave of 2. Suddenly it feels that my body, my gender, my art no longer matter much because there’s no one there to witness it or to care. But then, of course, we go to the streets and do the menial labor that feels most helpful to others. The smile on an old woman’s face when I bring her the medication she can’t pick up. You’re right, I think, that the future that existed a few months ago doesn’t anymore. But I can’t imagine that there is no future, that punk side of myself disappeared years ago when I realized how actually at risk the people around me are. I think we have a to make a future. I feel I am at my best and my worst. Sometimes I cry for no reason, just sitting there. At other moments I feel so free.
Images from Born in Flames, So Pretty & Working Girls