Exploring Self With and Without an Audience: ART HOE: A NEW ERA

If Art is an exploration of self in front of an audience, what is an exploration of self without an audience?

I reached a point in my life a few years ago when the shell of the person I pretended to be, could no longer hold me. It was painful, being this person that it seemed the American Dream wanted me to be. And once I concluded that in order for my experience of life to change, I had to change, I began dreaming a new dream.

I was in Tepoztlán, MX in the midst of an Ayahuasca ceremony, overwhelmed, when one of the two shamans placed his hand on my chest and said, “I am the universe and I love you just as you are.” And his words completely distracted me from the unease I was experiencing, because it was at that moment, I realized I had been subconsciously thinking it impossible for someone to love me as I am. I always imagined I needed to be something other than myself to be loved. I wasn’t ashamed by the revelation but rather intrigued. How else am I framing myself in my mind? What am I believing to be true?

Leaving the ceremony, returning to CDMX, I found my heart so filled with love, I could cry. Something inside me was unlocked by the Ayahuasca. It felt like my heart was singing, glowing… radiating love. And all I could think was, “I never knew it was possible to feel this much love.” How had I been living for so many years and never experienced this much love? And what’s more? Everywhere I went, people were drawn to me. Finding excuses to speak to me. It was like my heart was a magnet. What other states of being are waiting to be unlocked? I had to know.

I always saw Stanislavski’s “An Actor Prepares” as a metaphysical guide to living intentionally. You can almost see him winking at you as you read his instructions. He speaks of this natural force that is present in every moment, guiding you through the performance of a character based on your mental beliefs about them. Convince yourself of the exposition, be present and watch the magic unfold before you. With this in mind, I took it upon myself to rewrite my own character and commit it to memory, feel it as being so real that this natural force Stanislavski speaks of, will bring it to life.

It was the day before my classmates and I, of the International Summer School of Physical Theatre, were to give a performance that our instructor, Sergei Ostrenko, sat next to me and said, “Your performance is here,” he raises his hand to about nose level, “and it should be here.” He raises his hand above his head. I was baffled by this, I felt like the heart of the program; dedicated, focused, present. And our Russian instructor was singling me out? “Just because everyone else’s best is here” again at his nose, “doesn’t mean you stop here. If your best is here,” again above head, “Then you stop here.” (drops mic and walks away)

I understood. I never did my best. Even in school, I had straight A’s and didn’t work very hard at all. I learned most things quite easily and performed them fairly well, naturally. Even when I went the extra mile and gave more than those around me, I still wasn’t doing my best. I was just doing more than everyone else. What would happen if I did my best?

Laying on a friend’s couch in San Francisco, I thought about the flames I had just seen that completely devoured my entire apartment along with all my belongings. And I couldn’t help but think, if I hadn’t gotten that phone call and woken up, would I still be here? As I walked through the day, I saw opportunities to play into the American Mass Personality, to play small, to play dumb, to play polite. But I physically could not. If I had lost my life in that fire, all of these people I am seeing would be continuing on with their day, driving in traffic, going to dinner, touching themselves in front of their computers, and I am supposed to shrink myself to make them approve of me? I shall do no such thing. It was then that my self-concept became completely independent of the outside world.

I first started taking cold showers because as I evolved into my ideal, I couldn’t imagine myself afraid of cold water. So, for a year, I took only cold showers. “What other fears and compulsions are ruling me?” I asked. It wasn’t difficult to see my masturbatory behavior as compulsive. So, I thought, “I will stop masturbating for 90 days.” All in an effort to live a life of intention not just habit and fear. In those 90 days my skin improved so drastically that I thought, “well, let me go a whole year.” I quickly realized how useful it is to have something to focus on when one is abstaining in this way. And so I trained more, developed more creative projects. I began to notice I was changing. My interactions became less transactional and more about the experience. I wasn’t rushing to some end, but rather enjoying each and every experience. I also felt my sexual fire seeking other means of expression. And so I put it into my work.

In Berlin, I remember a man walking down the street and stopping right in front of me to urinate in the grass, exposing himself to me in the process, he could have hid himself, but he didn’t, and it felt quite natural. During my morning runs in Zipolite I saw multiple men develop erections under different circumstances and it was always treated like a leaf blowing in the wind; it happens, you glance at it, and you keep it moving. It all felt so natural. I began to think…

How can my Art be an exploration of self, if I am completely leaving out my sexual energy, naked body. and self mastery? All of which are extraordinarily large parts of the human experience. This is how Art Hoe was developed. While creating, a moment would always arise when I would think, “you know what should go here?” But I would shy away from the opportunity, mostly out of conformity or fear of disapproval. But it seems one can’t honestly explore themself while at the same time censoring themself. And my life is not about what others approve or disapprove of, it’s about me and my personal expansion and expression. And so I took my cultivated talents, my cultivated interests, and my cultivated style and created a New Era for myself, An Era of Authenticity.

Take it or leave it.

Scratch Night Preview (15m) – 7pm Thursday, March 28, 2024
Full Show (55m) – 3pm Sunday, March 31, 2024
@ FringeArts – 140 N Christopher Columbus Blvd. Phila, PA 19106

TICKET LINK: fringearts.com/event/miniball-art-hoe-a-new-era/
INSTAGRAM: instagram.com/thereignofhoe/
TEASER: youtube.com/watch?v=dUMH_Jnhdek

Video & Live performance – An hour-long music video come to life.
Spectacle & Metaphysical – Beautiful & exciting with Metaphysical themes.
Art & Hoe – Artful storytelling told without diluting the fierceness of Hoe.
A tour de force of live performance, where an auteurist approach to music video style storytelling meets the bravado of a skilled, experienced performer with a tendency to entertain.The show explores the relationship between the conscious mind and the pure, unbiased power of the subconscious mind to bring about a New Era of Heaven on Earth.It uses trippy, innovative video editing, sultry choreography, Drag, and pure stage presence to bring a mixture of concert and film, Art and Hoe, in a way that is unapologetic and universally felt.

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