Feb 24, 2009

Latvian Performance: A Green Wedding

(Wedding, 1973)
"Grinbergs remained singular among this dynamic crowd {the Latvian avant-garde} in his determination to promote new artistic genres, particularly performance based ones. Beginning in 1969 with a surreptitious, offbeat staging of Romeo and Juliet amid the art moderne sculptural ensembles of Latvia’s pre-Soviet national war memorial, Grinbergs and associates progressed from interpretations of classical drama to performance works that sought the fullest integrations of life and art. To wit, on August 24, 1972, Grinbergs married Inta Jaunzame during Latvia’s first Happening, a two-day event titled The Wedding of Jesus Christ. Held by the seaside with the participation of a dozen or so poets, artists, and musicians, The Wedding made explicit the messianic role that Grinbergs envisioned for himself within a philistine artistic wilderness, while at the same time reveling in conditions of a natural wilderness as only someone appreciative of Latvia’s indigenous pagan heritage could. In the following years, Andris and Inta, with a changing cast of collaborators, organized Happenings and Actions that took, as points of departure, subjects as diverse a Liv tribal music, the Baader-Meinhof terrorist gang, medieval sacral mysteries, and Bo Widerberg’s contemporaneous film Elvira Madigan, all the while integrating such arcane with the stuff of daily living, like the birth of their son."

(Easter, 1975)
Text From the Art of the Baltics, Rutgers University Press.

1 comment:

mem said...

cool pagans! also reminded me of this book which you might like lookin at...