Sunday, August 11, 2019

ATROCITIES 'R' US at #YYJfringe 2019

Press Release
Winner of the 2018 Montreal Fringe Creativity Award (and Re-nominated in 2019)
Performance Artist Tasha Diamant returns to #YYJfringe

Fringe Venue Site C
Heart & Hands Health Collective
851 Cormorant St.
18+ Nudity
Aug 22  Thu  8:15-9:30 pm
Aug 23  Fri  8:15-9:30 pm
Aug 24  Sat  8:15-9:30 pm
Aug 29  Thu  8:15-9:30 pm
Aug 30  Fri  8:15-9:30 pm
Aug 31  Sat  8:15-9:30 pm
ATROCITIES 'R' US at the Victoria Fringe
ATROCITIES 'R' US Facebook event

Tasha Diamant has been exploring radical vulnerability as a form of art and activism since starting the critically acclaimed Human Body Project in small-town
Alberta more than 13 years ago. Unscripted, without a conventional narrative, honest and naked, Diamant shows up as vulnerably as possible to mirror humanity's state at this terrifying moment in history.

Raw, yes, but she can also be pretty funny. Comedian Maria Bamford has joked: "Weakness is the brand." Riffing, Diamant says: "Pain is the brand." 
Diamant self-deprecatingly shares challenging truths about herself, such as struggling with severe emotional pain; surviving Stage 4 ovarian cancer; spectacularly failing to thrive in the cult of academia; mothering in isolation; etc.

The baring of body and self is also about reflecting the culture. Her work falls in the Shamanism and Elderhood Department, if Westernized, globalized consumer-people had
such a thing. Diamant is white, educated, and privileged. She has often spoken about her work as a way to use her privilege and pain to interrogate and criticize her culture.

And as a way to model vulnerability and show solidarity with those who are most vulnerable. In fact, Diamant takes her art to the streets. For years, often alone,
she has held regular "Vulnerability Vigils," standing naked in public, in some cases holding the Extinction Symbol. (Vulnerability Vigil on August 18, 2019)

By exposing herself and leaving herself open to judgment, audience members' issues—through their projections—may also become disclosed. Diamant is
subverting audience expectations of who is responsible for what and, yes, it's uncomfortable. But necessary.

In performance and in public, Diamant hopes to offer a form of cultural healing for a civilization that renders older women invisible, has no shamanic tradition, and
is destroying the world. For Diamant, who began naked performance art/activism in 2006, the need for a cure has gone far beyond urgency.

Tasha Diamant, 57, lives in Victoria, BC, and is married with two daughters, 17 and 12. Work she has been paid for: waitress, journalist, visual artist, yoga teacher, university
instructor. She has participated in several community and prison theatre projects. This is her 10th anniversary as a fringe performer. Diamant is a privileged, cis, straight woman of European descent who is not actually much of an extrovert.

"In a space with no limits, we nonetheless carry limits in ourselves, play roles and seek confirmation. Our winner is a show that isn't comfortable in its contradictions and cares so deeply it just can't give a fuck! Fierce nonchalance and the full power of extreme vulnerability: it challenges everything we believe about theatre and undermines all hierarchies. It is the ultimate feminist act and the ultimate act of fringe."
— Geoff Agombar, Montreal Fringe juror

"You are a role model."
— audience member

"When confronted with work to which I've had a visceral reaction I need to go deep within to confront the part of me that’s mirrored. Although there are many solemn moments, the performance is surprisingly life-affirming, with moments of laughter... Profoundly moving and relevant."
— Janis La CouvĂ©e

"The definition of sincerity."
— audience member

"You connect all the dots."
— audience member

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