SWAMPY: AT THE FLOODGATES
A strange creature was recently spotted on the banks of the river Thames in London. The creature, appearing out of nowhere, climbed up from the mud flats and was last seen climbing the river bank and entering the Thames Barrier Park… Through the Live Art performance “Swampy,” I adopt a role based on the all-too-human emotions embodied by creatures in science fiction. Ever since the first cheesy monster or goofy robot leered out from the cover of a pulpy magazine, science fiction has struggled to shake off a certain tinge of “camp.” No matter how hard creators may try to tell frightening stories, the slightly ironic silliness is always lurking just outside the frame. A little “camp” is fun to giggle at, but is often tinged with feelings that are based on real-life issues that are familiar and frightening, threatening and strange.
Born outside of Boston in the USA to an immigrant parent, I moved to Paris and lived there for a couple of years before settling for London as my base of operations. The performance “Swampy: At The Floodgates” took place at The Thames Barrier and was staged as an IM International event on December 18, designated “International Migrants Day” by the United Nations. The River Thames is a traditional port of entry into London (and the UK), whereas The Thames Barrier was erected to protect London from rising sea levels and the possibility of flooding.