Wednesday, January 26, 2005

La vie en rose

I'm on Tim Miller's email list. I'm on a lot of email lists, from Senator Kay Bailey Hutchins' to Save the Hubble. But I actually know Tim Miller. Well, we met several years ago. In Dallas. I and Stephen hung out with him, one night, for hours. We ate supper together and had a wonderful conversation. I flattered him by saying, "You're a legend: you're in the history books!" I gushed. And looking back, perhaps that might have been interpreted as an insult. I used to do performance art, and Tim Miller's performance art was always in the news because of Jesse Helms, the NEA, rampant homophobia in Reagan's Amerika, among others.

After meeting him, we would keep in touch fairly regularly via email. But over the years, I've become just one more name on his mass email list, where he announces upcoming shows and other information.

His most recent email regarded the 2004 elections and included a meditation on colors, blending Republican red and Democrat blue* to make his own special hue of queerness:

I always travel with one of my performer's Bibles with me ---the ROSCOLUX theater lighting gel guide. I know when painters mix colors, red and blue make purple. But since I'm a performers when you mix red and blue and add light - it's our secret power, that light- you get PINK. Pink that is in between. Liminal. Interstitial (Okay, I joined word of the day club) Pink that is generous. Queered. Sexy. Think pink. Show pink. For me Rosco 27 and Rosco 83 makes Rosco 339 Broadway Pink! An address I lived at in NYC!

Always with Tim's performance, personal narrative and ritual trump abstraction.

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* The colors for the two American political parties came from the ballots in Texas. Illiterate Texans simply could choose a color--most often the color blue because that stood for the party that was not the party of Lincoln. All that changed with Lyndon Johnson, when the blue party took on the color black. And now: viola! Texas is red.

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