From an email:
“Dudley Saunders’ IN THESE BOXES is an uncommon – and uncanny – mix of live music, narratives and video art that explores the human need to keep the dead from disappearing by holding on to their things. He asks us to reach out locally in DC for photos of the objects people have inherited from loved ones and can’t let go of. His performance incorporates images collected from the local community. Performance, one night only, Saturday March 8, 2014 at 8pm. Tickets $8
BloomBars presents a One Night Performance of Dudley Saunders’ IN THESE BOXES located at 3222 11th St NW Washington, DC on Saturday, March 8, 2014 from 8p.m.- 9:30p.m.
Personal contributions – gathered from DC communities- will be incorporated into video art for Dudley’s DC performance of IN THESE BOXES at Bloombars; a combination of video, song and stories that imagines the lives of lost people through the objects they left behind. In the piece, Dudley takes 12 objects left behind by the dead and weaves each of them into a video hallucination of the missing life. As he sings their stories at the front of stage, the world of the vanished comes to life on the screen behind him.
The piece is inspired by his own AIDS-era history: “In the fall of 1991, my two ex-lovers died within two months of each other. But what made it worse was realizing that everyone who remembered us together was also dead. Their few objects were the only evidence that they had existed, and had meaning no-one else could understand: how can you explain why an old spoon is important?”
Most of us, especially those whose lives are inherently risky because of who they are or where they live, have had some version of this experience. So Dudley has created a unique online/community site and invites all DC residents to participate. For the BloomBars performance, Dudley, BloomBars and local partners are asking community residents to take photos of the objects they have inherited and can’t let go, and then post them to Instagram with the hash-tag #InTheseBoxes or send them to directly to [email protected] These personal contributions will then be incorporated into the final video art piece in the BloomBars show; additionally, they will live in perpetuity online at www.InTheseBoxes.com, in what he calls “a social media cemetery”. In these two ways, these emotional objects can become part of a living piece of art, rather than simply moldering alone in people’s closets.
Dudley’s songs won the Out Music Award for Best Album and his last solo performance piece was named “Best Musical” by New York Press.”