RAINBOW FACE LIVE!
BECK+COL / BECK STAFFORD, COLLIN STAFFORD
“Rainbow Face Live!” is a wrestling match set in an alternate fantasy universe within the monster Rainbow Face’s mind. The artists and performers, Beck+Col, use phantasmagorical, costume-based performance and video to create the context for this battle, complete with a stylized boxing ring. With each color representing a fracture of Rainbow Face, the colorful monsters physically express internal conflicts that suggest the internal pressures of systemic oppression vs. the Other.
The Other is someone who has “deviated from social norms through differences of race, gender, and differences in physical and mental capacity [and species],” (Puleo). Institutions use psychic violence to impose stratification on humanity. These varying classifications are then internalized by Others, creating a self-imposing and self-perpetuating hierarchy.
The performance is an explosive, comical battle that mixes elements of boxing, wrestling, and slapstick. It begins with over-the-top introductions by artist von curtis, complete with introduction videos, music, and theatrical entrances by the fighters Red, Orange, and Yellow. Three rounds of structured improvisation make up the fight. Each round is separated by Green, who presents a card in between each one. Behind the fighters, an accompanying video shows dozens of monsters in a stadium setting cheering on the match.
In “Rainbow Face Live!,” duo Beck+Col worked with ¡samplista!, a decentralized collection of Los Angeles-based artists including von curtis, Lisa Diane Wedgeworth, and Shelley Bloom to bring their video Rainbow Face to the REDCAT stage.