art is either a complaint or do something else was created in response to an interview that painter, Jasper Johns had done with Mark Rosenthal that dealt with the creation of a painting. Specifically, it questioned the painter’s relationship to representation and how he addresses space and time within his compositions.As a dance artist, I am concerned with representation, embodiment and composition in space and in time and so, I was attracted to this piece. In 2004, I organized a draft of art is either for two dancers. Over the years, plastic orchid has performed varied versions of this work. With questions sitting at the centre of the score, every incarnation of art is either a complaint or do something else is different. It has developed into a tool that re-focuses our practice every time we perform as it asks us consider our relationship to composition. Specifically, how we weave relationships between our bodies and the sonic environment to create and transform ephemeral moments of representation in space over time.

commissioned by The New Forms Festival

choreography / James Gnam 

performance / Natalie LeFebvre Gnam, Bevin Poole

composer / John Cage 

media / Josh Hite and/or Evann Siebens  

length / 15 mins 

premiered / New Forms Festival,

presented / The Indexical, Alphabetized, Mediated, Archival Dance-a-Thon Performance - Wil Aballe Art Projects/WAAP and Evann Siebens, Infringing Dance Festival, Dances for a Small Stage, The Vancouver Art Gallery