Visual + Performance
Sometimes I do projects that mainly live in spaces of visual art or as performances. Sometimes there are lots of connections between this work and the books and chapbooks and translations. Often this visual and performance work involves collaborations with others—artists, organizers, writers, humans, landscapes, communities. Some of these are quick and small. Some are longer and more involved. Here is a place where I can bring those pieces together. A public archive of a sort.
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2018 - Present
Begun in September 2018, The Unsettlements are a new and growing body of work that delve into sites of trauma, violence, and familial memory in Houston and in Texas where seven generations of my settler-colonial family have lived. The project delves into family history and narratives with all of their unreliability and their surprise. An attempt to imagine ways of unsettling genealogical claims, of grounding beyond white nationalism, and of challenging white supremacy and heterosexism.
Amigos falsos / False Friends
A collaboration from 2017 between Jorge Galván Flores and John Pluecker. Initially an installation at the Wedge Space at Houston Community College - Southeast Campus and then featured at Diverseworks as part of Lines Drawn . An examination of the limits, joys and travails of false friendship, both linguistically and culturally. The work in the show thinks about el viaje/the voyage, Mexico/Texas, and more broadly the meaning of a word in one language and its relationship to a similar sounding work in another. Moving beyond prescriptive linguistic judgements, the work flows between English and Spanish, creating a space for play, persuasion and laughter.
Karankawa Carancahua Carancagua Karankaway
A collaboration between Nuria Montiel and John Pluecker for an installation at Project Row Houses during Round 44: Shattering the Concrete: Artists, Activists and Instigators, curated by Raquel De Anda in spring 2016. A collaborative visual and sound poem that meditates on language and memory in the context of colonial structures of power that attempt to erase one of the indigenous cultures that inhabited Southeast Texas: the Karankawa. This project grew out of the Anti-Glossary, a pamphlet in an artist book Ioyaiene that eventually became part of my book Ford Over.
A collaborative performance by Autumn Knight and John Pluecker from 2013. A union of movement, poetry, improvisation, reading and writing. A site-specific response to two spaces: Tony Feher’s Free Fall exhibit at Diverseworks and Autumn Knight’s futz: a research method installation at Project Row Houses. An embodied conversation across two locations around ephemerality, generational legacy and fantasy. An investigation into the intersection of writing and the body.
Meaning in Motion
A collaboration with Pablo Giménez Zapiola along the train tracks of Southwest Houston. Zapiola's Meaning in Motion project entails large-scale projections of words, literary passages and poems onto moving trains, as well as from a moving car onto the environment (houses, trees, buildings, fences, freeways, etc.). For this collaboration, Zapiola projected part of an untitled poem from my book Ford Over onto the side of a passing train.
That Idea of Everything
An audio piece done for Carrie Schneider's Hear Our Houston project. A walk with my father from Jefferson & Baird to Lawson & Broadmoor in Houston's East End.
Not so much a tour to make things more legible, but a remnant of a walk, an audio piece standing in for the lack of a tour.