The Rude Mechanicals (http://www.rudemechanicals.co.uk) did a performance at the Others in Stoke Newington and Miss Roberts wanted a minotaur to stand at the door, chained to a plinth. As the audience entered, they’d see this bull-headed nude man, painted gold, trying to non-vocally entice them into feeding him from a nearby buffet table, just out of his reach.
The reality was a little different and demonstrated perhaps how art can be compromised for practical concerns. A full coat of gold body paint was avoided, for fear of me leaving golden arse-prints on members on the audience as they brushed past me. The chain had to have a release mechanism on it, in case of a fire. The buffet table became a single fruit cake (something I can relate to). And for ease of access the plinth was moved away from the door. So I played the role of a naked man with gold paint on just his nipples and his bits, offering people slices of fruit cake. I did have a bull mask, though.
One lady made a point of spanking me whenever she went past - a good job I hadn’t put gold paint on my bottom, although having a flesh-coloured gap in the gold paint would have been amusing. And the culprit would have been easy to locate: check for the woman whose golden hand fits the non-painted handprint. It’d be just like the Cinderella story.
The night saw a debut showing of the video for Phylactery, which was recorded in January 2010 and is very close to being completed.
Towards the end of the evening the compere, a personable and plain-speaking young lady, asked me “is your [willy] still cold?” I launched into a spiel about body fascism: how I’m conscious of wanting to look my best by conforming to the cultural male aspirational standard despite the low temperature; how I also want to be genuine and comfortable simply being myself; and how by being relaxed in my nudity I could provide an example to others, striking a blow against the idea that our bodies can be judged and contempt encouraged by the expectations promoted by the advertising industry.
"No", she said. "Is your [willy] still gold?”