How 1 Become 2
The image above is of the Famous Lauren Barri Holstein in performance work How 2 Become 1. This is shock value Live Art, you'll never seen anything like it. Oh wait, you will, because actually Ann Liv Young is the real deal.
Some might argue we're talking mere inspiration or appropriation, but I don't buy that. It's not right, Holstein passes off as her own a lot of the elements that constitute the 'graciously' subtle art of Ann Liv Young: fanny splits, out-of-tune pop music singing, live video feed of the performance projected onto a screen in the back, genitalia close-ups, peeing, mess, salacious talk, more mess, fluids, chaos. And what shocked me the most was the audacity of Holstein to also copy the shambolic dominatrix character of Young, bossing her obedient assistants around on stage and intimidating the audience, albeit in a less aggressive manner than Young's.
Of course each of those things have been done by others too, but this particular blend I believe is vintage Ann Liv Young and I feel confident in saying that although Holstein's narrative is different from the work of Young, How 2 Become 1 could be a blatant case of plagiarism. Would Young even mind? I don't know, still, I'm concerned about the supporting of this activity; How 2 Become 1 is part of SPILL coming up at the Barbican soon and was presented yesterday as part of FRESH AiR, a platform for emerging live artists. Holstein might have brought it with her over the Atlantic, but unfortunately she is no breath of fresh air to me.
Ann Liv Young, Disturbia, The Bagwell in Me, Premiere, The KitchenAnn Liv Young on Vimeo