Performance Art: "Miss Art World"
Crowning of Miss Art World! This video and performance art piece was the crowning of Miss Art World. Miss Art World is a lifelong performance piece that challenges the standards of beauty by using visual elements and ideologies of beauty pageants. In the world of pageants you are crowned and have one year to be Miss …, the age limit Miss usually fall between 17-29, “Miss” is define typically as a young unmarried woman which is the period of time in a women’s life when she has the highest value in society, they are most desired. Childbearing is the second highest value period in a women’s life. Both of these periods of being highly valued are decided by others because others place a value on them. At least this how I grow up feeling and believing. For me as Miss Art World the lifelong performance piece is a challenge. I am someone who easily bought into these beliefs, I enjoyed pageants it is an environment where I fit in but learning about feminism my beliefs started to shift and elements of world I belong in seemed wrong. As Miss New York World, within the one year there is a feeling that I have a right to wear the crown and sash because I had earned it, a panel of judges decided I was the winner. So I never question it but when I went out as Miss Art World at first there was anxiety because no one said I was pretty enough and worthy enough. However I soon decided I don’t need to be pretty enough, or young, or unmarried, or pregnant to be valued. I am Miss Art World because I value myself always. I will keep the “Miss” in my title even though I am married because to flip the value place on the period of being a “Miss” on its head. These categories and words do for define us. When I am ninety I will still wear the Miss Art World sash and know value is a personal choice. I think we have these fears that society has given us and it is our job to challenge these fears even if they make us uncomfortable. For example the fear of letting people see me without makeup stuck with me for a long time, it wasn’t until I performed “Personal Vacation” where I had to enter the room with full hair and makeup and then take it all off is when I got over this fear. That is want I want everyone to be able to do. Beauty is not a necessary it is an accessory.
Video Art: "Hard to Beauty Breath"
New video art piece. Rather then telling you the meaning behind this piece I would rather here from you so please comment and share your thoughts. Miss Art World KJCookseyart.com Artist Statement Success in pageantry proved to be both my salvation as well as a burden. My sight began slowly deteriorating at the age of twelve and will continue to do so throughout my life with no cure. The rejection and prejudices I experienced led me to seek out other means of fulfillment; this came in the form of beauty pageants and modeling. Using my experiences, I critique the unrealistic display of the “perfected” physical form and the pressures to attain it. I am both an insider and outsider of mainstream “beauty” yet to bring both perspectives together I became Miss Art World. I use this title throughout my work to question the dominating ideologies of beauty fused with the disturbing and obsessive struggle to obtain it.
Performance Art: "Trappings"
Performance. Description: The performance begins with three women sitting as close as possible to each other tangled in their limbs. The women are wearing their "trimmings" beauty masks, lip plumper, and numerous amounts of panty hose over their bodies. One by one each woman pulls red ribbon out of their breasts then proceeds to tie each other up. At the beginning of the performance the pace is slow and each woman takes turns with the ribbon or yarn but as the performance continues the pace gets faster. The women become more aggressive when wrapping each other yet submissive when they are not. In the end the women are tied up, tangled and trapped to each other.
Performance Art: "Knot"
This video was made in response to participating in the beauty and pageantry industry. As Miss New York World I installed strand by strand hair extensions. This video shows my struggle with the hair extensions as they begin to grow out and the beads tangle with my natural hair and slowly ripping my hair out. This is the struggle between the natural body fighting with the unnatural beauty add-ons.
Performance Art: "Hair"
The body and unbody series is made in response to items and products used in the beauty industry believed to enhance or make beautiful. This video deconstructs these supplementary unbody element of hair extension by directly adding and subtracting them, blurring the line of the body’s original form.