I believe my work sits within different contexts, I can see my work in relation to queerness, club culture, magic, spirituality, and postcolonialism. For me, deviancy is the element that brings it all together. The driving impulse behind my practice is a project of decolonising the spirit.  A gesture towards deviating from the well-established paths that lead back to the Enlightenment, rising out of a colonial and patriarchal view of the world with Europe at its centre. A perception that privileges mind and eye over body and senses, and that has a linear and forward-facing conception of history.

 

In “Rethinking the Apocalypse: An Indigenous Anti-Futurist Manifesto[1] from 2020,  the author (anon) describes anti-colonial imagination in opposition to “subjective reaction to colonial futurisms, it is anti-settler future. Our life cycles are not linear, our future exists without time. It is a dream, uncolonized.”[2] For me this notion is interesting as a counter-environment to the idea of progress which Western society is based upon, one that can lead us through the end of the world as we know it and out the other side.

 

I believe magic can help in this project. In 2019, I did a research residency at the Museum of Magic and Witchcraft, which had a great impact on my practice. One book that was very influential in my thinking was Starhawk’s Dreaming the Dark from 2019. Starhawk says “Magic that works is itself a language, a language of action, images, of things rather than abstracts. These things are seen not as objects but as consciousness-manifest. Magic speaks to the deep parts of ourselves that were formed before we knew abstraction.”[3] For me this passage speaks of magic as a tool for unlearning, a process which denies the sovereignty of hegemonic culture in favour of embodied knowledge, the truth that belongs to everyone and is unique to each one of us.

 

Queer club culture is another thing which greatly influences my work. For me it is a ritual, a form of ceremony, in which queer people come together and have space to celebrate their queerness. They bring forth a community and act as a form of resistance to the oppressive forces of heteronormative society. Byung-Chul Han in The Disappearance of Rituals from 2020, describes rituals as “symbolic techniques of making oneself at home in the world. They transform being in the world into being at home. They turn the world into a reliable place.”[4] Which for me is what queer club culture does for queer people, it makes the world habitable for us.

 



[1] Anon. “Rethinking the Apocalypse: An Indigenous Anti-Futurist Manifesto.” Indigenous Action Media, March 19, 2020. https://www.indigenousaction.org/rethinking-the-apocalypse-an-indigenous-anti-futurist-manifesto/. Date last accessed 08/01/202

 

[2] Anon. “Rethinking the Apocalypse: An Indigenous Anti-Futurist Manifesto.” Indigenous Action Media, March 19, 2020. https://www.indigenousaction.org/rethinking-the-apocalypse-an-indigenous-anti-futurist-manifesto/, p. 9. Date last accessed 08/01/202

 

[3] Starhawk, Dreaming the Dark: Magic, Sex, and Politics (Boston, Mass.: Beacon Press, 1997), p. 26.

 

[4] Byung-Chul Han, and Daniel Steuer, The Disappearance of Rituals : A Topology of the Present (Cambridge, Uk ; Medford, Ma: Polity, 2020). p. 2

 

 

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