dead(air), 2015, single-channel video and live performance. 

“dead(air), 2015”, is comprised of a single-channel video and accompanying 9 minute performance. The video component of “dead(air)” collects samples of police audio, 911 dispatches and literary and non-fiction accounts of first-hand violence. Moving from literary accounts and real-life instances of state violence, the video plays as performers simultaneously assume positions of apprehension, escape, and death. This work borrows gestures from contemporary protest movements and uses forms of avant garde dance to confront the viewer with representations of violence and resistance.

This work explores how we might understand and even empathise with perpetrators of violence while simultaneously bearing witness to the suffering of victims in order to better understand systemic and recurrent abuse of state power and the mechanisms of anti-black violence. By framing first-hand testimony of perpetrators of lethal violence using both real-life and literary sources and presenting it alongside the performance of victimization, this work asks viewers to negotiate between the multiple subject positions implicated within acts of state violence.

The video includes text excerpts from “Native Son”, “Crime and Punishment” and various actual accounts of police violence including Darren Wilson. Sound is pulled from the 911 call which ended the life of Tamir Rice and anonymous police dash camera footage.


Performance at Chicago Humanities Festival, MCA Chicago, 2019


Rehearsal with performers, 2019, MCA Chicago


Rehearsal with performers, 2019, MCA Chicago