When I was teaching in Texas, I didn't get tenure the first time I "CAME UP" for it....
As a result, I thought about my incredible students, my incredible salary, my incredible little home in Austin, my incredible health plan, my incredible grant to go to India and future grants, my incredible proximity to my teachers- the Mehtas, who I visited in Houston every weekend and I knew I needed to be proactive with my angry-disappointment. Was it sexism, agism? Feminist collleagues and the most incredible and smart and intelligent professor of law on the teaching staff at UT Austin,t thought I had a "case" so I got lots of help, a tall, NY City telephone book pile of letters of support from around the world and my students protested ...all of this to rescind and change the minds of UT bosses so that I could get tenure. It was a media circus. The frosting on the cake was a letter of "support" from then Governor George Bush, the painter, who was friends with an artist co-friend who asked "George" to write a letter to University of Texas Austin in my favor so that I could get tenure. George W did and it didn't seem to make a difference except that my case went up for approval the second time. It was not an instant GET OUT OF JAIL ticket but a second chance. A month before a yes or no from up the hill which was looking like a YES, I was coming to the end of the semester and at one of the final classes, my students' assignment was to re-act/explain/re-perform a past performance from the History of Performance and a wonderful and bright and beautiful young man in my class turned out the lights and projected a slide or maybe it was a video of Vito Acconci performing SEEDBED, an event where Acconci masturbated under a made-for-him gallery sub-floor while the footsteps of the gallery goers overhead gave the signal for Acconci's pleasure-action. (Note that Marina Abromovic re-performed that one for her 7 PERFORMANCES OF OTHER PERFORMANCE ARTISTS PERFORMANCES show. (My title, not hers.) Here is where the plot thickens. BACKSTORY:The woman from theatre who came to me after her first class in my class, in the spring , in bawling/tears, saying, in loose quote, "You have just undone my entire theatre training with your teachings in this class," might be, if I remember correctly, the one who told her parents that there was masturbation happening in my performance class, never interviewing me or my performance student who "approximated" masturbation and who was "approximating" in total darkness with his back or was it his side to us and his hand on his "lap." That was the straw that broke George Bush's letter-of-support-back and completely dislodged his good intentions and position of weight. That mother-to-the-president of UT Austin complaint undid a year of my trying to get tenure and completely irrelevanted all of my friends' hard work! So I went home to upstate NY and for two years, wrote, cried, screamed and slid into a haze and blur, wondering why I lost my fabulous job. More back story: For a year before that event, I was feeling/hearing/knowing this message, "GO BE WITH YOUR FATHER!" And I didn't listen. It was very loud and still I didn't listen. The University of Texas listened to my voice for me and kicked me out so that I could go and be with my father and experience one of the most important/transformative events of my life; getting to know him and take care of him for the last 7 years of his life. I now thank Texas for not wanting me!!!!!! Karma listens and acts when hearts don't.
Once upon a time in a beautiful , beautiful mountain town there lived a farm family with two children...a girl and a boy.
They played in the fields and in the barns and in the pond and the pasture and had a great great life, helping with the gardens, feeding the chickens and milking the cows.
What a happy life!
All of a sudden this changed one day when two garden fairy angels appeared to them and
said, "From now on, you will be given a test. The kids at school will bully you both, for reasons that you don't understand. We will be there with you and will watch how you handle this unhappy situation. And remember, ask us for help and we will fly to your side and advise you, OK?"
The two children, Samantha and Miguel, looked into each other's puzzled eyes and wondered how their life would change. " Don't be afraid Miguel,"said Samantha, "and
remember that the ANGEL FAIRES promised to help us. Lets climb our favorite tree and think about how we will handle this new challenge." The tree was close to the ground and had a ladder next to it PLUS they had permission from their parents to climb to the lowest branch so they wouldn't fall. They enjoyed their time there day after day
and would even do their homework in the tree.
Everything was fine and then six months later, school became very upsetting.
They each were being bullied a few times a week. Remembering that they had helpers,
they climbed their tree, and asked the FAIRIE ANGELS to come to them. "Help Help we need help!"
Suddenly , two small glittering light beings appeared. It was the Angels! As their friends got closer
the children saw the FAIRIE ANGELS' tiny faces, tiny wings, tiny angel hands, and they also noticed
that they were smiling. " We are so sad that we are being bullied , what should we do," said Miguel.
The angels said , "Don't worry, we can help you."Then both angels began to sing the following words.........
" Oh little girl and little boy, listen to our song of joy. Play with mother nature
like a toy. Breathe her air,
it is so fair. Climb her mountains,
if you dare. Be like a tree,
so strong and free. Birds come sing
for you and me. Be strong, children , be strong. In this life
there is some wrong. Be strong , children, be strong.
And if our heart is full of love, we can forgive a bullys shove." The children applauded and giggled with happiness. "Yay yay, now we know how to love everyday. Yay,yay we will love everyday."
From the distance the children heard,"Come home to eat, come home to eat." "Angels, angels, we have to go but we'll see you here tomorrow" they said as they ran home through the fields of flowers.
Ever since they heard that song, they would ask the ANGLES and the tree questions about life, questions about the other kids at school and they told MOTHER NATURE all of their problems. This quiet and peaceful way of handling their stress was turning out to be wonderful, restful, heart-warming and one day they went to school and the other kids treated them so nicely...there was no bullying, no bad language, no negative comments, no hitting, no name calling. It felt like something wonderful had happened.
To celebrate, they ate a special afternoon snack while reporting the good news to their MAGIC TREE , who said : " You know those Angels that you did see ? They will always be!"
From her earliest memories of bologna being cut into unrecognizable shapes and given to her, a vegetarian at 4 years old, to the facinainating end story of her grandfather's enteral tube feeding, this fascinating tome mixes into it's "menu"; appliance lore, technological food scares, feminist raised fists, artists pot lucks and Neiman Marcus! Read it, study it, learn from it and if u have not already juiced your breakfast, try one of Kelley's receipes which food-app-tapas this important read. Linda Mary montano, Performance Artist
BACKSTORY OF ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART 1998-2019WHY I CREATED IT:
I was on a roll having completed 14 YEARS OF LIVING ART, 1984-1998; wearing one color clothes and experiencing thousands of disciplines/vows to keep me anchored in the 7 Chakras. I had also just finished a 7 year performance art teaching commitment at the University of Texas, Austin, 1992-1998, and as a cocky academeze, I believed that the next move in my process must be an imitation of my experience and so I developed what approximated a self-designed school based on my past 7 years as a "professor" and called the institution, ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART.
My motives were:
1. To extend my research to others.
2. To create an institution devoid of the stink of academia.
3. To allow others to be with me/near me virtually and online, not in the flesh.
4. To dissolve the teacher-student dyad and allow everyone to enjoy their own professorship.
5. To dislodge $ from the equation and offer the experience for free.
6. To make sure that nothing was demanded of the participants: no grades, no dissertations, no nothing if that was what they decided.
7. To make sure that it was fun.
As I write this, it is 2015, and the experience in non-teaching is almost over and as I look back, I am amazed at how organic it was . That is, it came into being, effulgently expanded and peacefully rescinded: during years 1-7, the "school" was in it's infancy. Per usual, I put out a call for participants, advertising it, at Franklin Furnace. That had worked so perfectly when I had put out a call for THE SUMMER SAINT CAMP which I offered during 14 YEARS OF LIVING ART 1984-1998. Many, many came to be with me at THE ART LIFE INSTITUTE thanks to Franklin Furnace and Martha Wilson who let the art world know our needs, then communicated them to ou tribe, inviting artists/lifeists to participate.
Betsea Caygill saw my request and neither she or I knew what to do, since it was a "school" that had just opened it's doors. We parted ways with blurred eyes and it took me 6 years to grow into my concept or better yet, it took time for me to let go of how to do it and let the concept have it's own life and mood and reasoning and laws. So here is the second call. It is included verbatim:
THE SECOND SEVEN YEARS:
It was time. The response was extraordinary. The following artists/lifeists are graduates:
We blossomed, flourished, were in continual and thrice daily email contact. Sometimes phone. In retrospect, maybe the timing was more appropriate because my father had just died and I NEEDED community and virtual "students" (really co-teachers). Not sure.
Or was it because the concept was ripe? Or was it because the "school" was mirroring other low-res graduate art schools which appeal to already established artists who come together twice a year and then work apart from the institution via skype/email/internet? Or was it because the internet is giving birth to multi-level interactive virtual communities and teaching modalities and our "school" hitched itself to this cultural wave?
THE LAST SEVEN YEARS :
As usual, I put out the call via Franklin Furnace, but no, maybe this time Facebook. Yes, now I remember, Facebook also. Facebook my companion and friend and letter carrier and stamp and dictionary and glossary and camera and gallery and meeting place. Many applied. I chose two, wondering what was happening. Was I becoming institutional? Greedy? Self-conscious? No more fun? Judgmental? Distastefully corporate? Not good. Why do I say this? BECAUSE:
1. I put a number limit on participants , and committed the sin of academia and exclusion. Not good.
2. I began thinking, hey, I could make money with this and even stated in the admission policy that I would charge $100 a year. Another not good .
3. I was in position of "authority" and said no to people who wanted to be in the "school" and that gave me flashbacks to sitting on committees while in academia and saying yes and no and judging peers and re-visiting that trauma was a real clue that the idea had run it's course but I was committed to ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART!!!! Now what could I do?
All of these gut feelings indicated that the "school" had:
1. Been born
3. Was evolving in a way I never imagined
A GREAT ENDING
There are now two artists who are completing the last seven years: EK Smith (repeating school for 14 years) and Nells Festy. We have a great time. No expectations. Are there for each other if we want. We meet on Facebook. The crescendo is kind.
WHAT I LEARNED FROM THIS ENDURANCE:
1. Giving myself time-based performances and endurances has insured my real-time existence. Reminds me to live and that I am alive.
2. We had a ball.
3. I'm BEYOND ecstatic that we went to school together and we might meet in the flesh for a reunion some day????
3. Time flies.
4. The universe is a school and we are all on the same page.
5. Facebook, Twitter, Skype, Instagram, Netflix are school enough.
6. I'm enjoying my semi-retirement.
7. I now go to school at the gym and take SENIOR STRETCH.
LINDA AS PAUL: LINDA MARY MONTANO AND PAUL McMAHON WILL SHARE WITH YOU:
A ONE HOUR GLANDATHON IN MEMORY OF CHRIS BURDEN AND RACHEL ROSENTHAL
LINDA MARY MONTANO has been "being Paul " for many years and she is also, Mother Theresa, Hillary Clinton and Bob Dylan sometimes. For this Glandathon performance, Linda and Paul will sing thanks to the seven glands of the body and Montano will lip-synch, as Paul sings his songs . We offer this performance in memory of performance artists, Chris Burden and Rachel Rosenthal. We thank JILL & HOAK for hosting us at GRACE.
LINDA MARY MONTANAO: Montano has lived performance, endured as performance, taught performance , written about performance and videotaped as performance. All can be found for free on You Tube; at Fales Library, NYU, where her archive resides and if you don't want to go out, you can see her work on her webpage; www.lindamontano.com.
PAUL McMAHON: McMAHON is one of the legendary Bards of Woodstock, NY, where he performs; composes music; heals; officiates at his Sunday Church; gives food, care and shelter to his twin daughters and appears at Woodstock and NYC venues as THE ROCK AND ROLL THERAPIST. McMahon, a love guru, is real!
ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART (1998-2019): LINDA MARY MONTANO
MISSION STATEMENT: ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART (1998-2019) is art that compassionately practices an appreciation for life and is a durational continuation of my exploration of the art of consciousness. The artist/lifeists invited to this experience, ecumenically choose their own unique methodologies and explore their work while remaining in virtual/internet communication with each other throughout their practice of compassionately transforming their life, via art. It is based on Linda Mary Montano’s endurance: 7 YEARS OF LIVING ART + ANOTHER 7 YEARS OF LIVING ART = 14 YEARS OF LIVING ART, 12/8/1984—12/8/1998. www.lindamontano.comwww.vdb.orghttp://lindamarymontano.blogspot.com
DESCRIPTION: “When I finished 14 YEARS OF LIVING ART, an art experience-endurance based on the 7 chakras, I became so enamored of working with time that I wanted to share that joy with others, and so I designed ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART. I felt that other artists could become virtual/internet art family and I would feel as if I were in good company, with like-minded friends, doing work based on time, endurance and with reference to my past work, but interpreted by each artist according to their discipline, practice and personal aesthetic.
I am proud and honored to be in the company of the following life-artists in this Scholl of ART/LIFE.” Linda Mary Montano
PARTICIPANT IN THE FIRST SEVEN YEARS OF ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART: 1998-2005: BETSEA CAYGILL: LIVING LIFE ARTFULLY.
PARTICIPANTS IN SECOND SEVEN YEARS OF ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART: 2005-2012
MICHELLE BUSH: SEVEN YEARS OF POSITIVE OBSESSIONS, 12/8/2005-12/8/2012. I obsess on one sentence/statement and colour in relation to the chakras producing collaborative or interventionist and performance pieces each year.
BARBARA CARRELLAS: EIGHT NEW/ANCIENT SACRAMENTS OF PLEASURE AND CHANGE, 12/8/2004-12/8/2011. I create chakra-based rituals which I celebrate on the eight natural holidays (solstices, equinoxes, etc.) that explore and celebrate the paradoxes between the fixed commitments/initiations of the seven sacraments of the Catholic church and the ever-changing, fluid realms of intuition, pleasure and nature. EIGHT YEARS OF LIVING ART, www.barbaracarrellas.com
SC DURKIN: SEVEN YEARS OF MUSIC, 12/8/2005-12/8/2012. I endeavor to learn one musical instrument a year for the next seven years. SEVEN YEARS OF MUSIC, www.scdurkin.com
VERNITA N'COGNITA: 7 MORE UNTITLED YEARS OF WHEREVER MY ART LEADS ME, 12/8/2004-12/8/2011. www.ncognita.com
ESTHER K. SMITH: THEIR HOUSE IS A MUSEUM, 12/8/2004-12/8/2011. Seven years in other people's houses. EK SMITH MUSEUM, www.purgatorypiepress.com
KRISTA KELLY WALSH: SEVEN MIRRORS, 2006-2012. My work is based on the Cabalist system of reading the will of the seven planetarty spirits in the seven mirrors that are made of seven metals and associated with the 7 days of the week, seven planets and cooresponding themes. Each year I will make a corresponding mirror and wear a bead of the same metal, make projects and performances based on the themes of that metal.
SATELLITE PROJECT: The satellite project is an ongoing congruent program of artists/lifeists within ANOTHER 21 YEARSOF LIVING ART.
PARTICIPANTS IN THE SATALITE PROJECT:
STEVEN REIGNS: S(T)EVEN YEARS, 1/12007-1/1/20014. I intend to explore the connection between art, life, and spirituality through writing practice, public writing workshops, and publishing chapbooks. S(T)EVEN YEARS SANCTUARY, www.stevenreigns.com
VICTORIA SINGH & KURTIS CHAMPION: SON/ART—CHAKRA COLOR RITUALS, 7/7/04-7/7/11. Kurtis celebrates the chakra colors of each 'year' with art projects on the 7th day of each month.
ELIZABETH STEPHENS & ANNIE SPRINKLE: LOVE ART LABORATORY—7 YEARS EXPLORING LOVE AS ART, 12/8/2004-12/8/2011. We make art about love. LOVE ART LABORATORY, www.loveartlab.org
PARTICIPANTS IN THE THIRD SEVEN YEARS OF ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART: 2012-2019
EK SMITH;CLEANING/SINGING/DRAWING I will divide my living/working space into 7 sections. Each year, for 7 years, I will clean and organize my space, singing as I work, and documenting my experiences with an ongoing series of drawings.
NELLS FASTY:"Seven Years of Forgetting" is a 7 year performance, 2012-2019. I will choose a new number everyday based on trying to forget the previous day's number that had been chosen. Each year, the numerical results will be turned into a musical composition using computer software to interpret the data. ___________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________ LINDA MARY MONTANO: ANOTHER 21 YEARS OF LIVING ART 1998-2019