|B. Jack Bowman|
|Member of the Tennessee House of Representatives
from the Roane County district
July 4, 1932 |
Performance art is the ultimate in creativity. Since it has so many possibilities at creativity, it's essence tends to become creativity.
This is why my art is about violence. Because I was subjected to so much of it as a kid. After that, and a lot of thinking, I became less violent. I realized that there must be other ways. So, I started to pursue them.
But my patriotism goes for something beyond what we have. We don't have something that I want to die for – anymore.
I love old books. They tell you stories about their use. You can see where the fingerprints touched the pages as they held the book open. You can see how long they lingered on each page by the finger stains.
My kids are free to do what ever they want. Because I only advise. I don't make them do anything.
We're all so mauled by information, but it's recycled information. We need to shut it out. So, you've got to get bizarre. This is an artist's purpose – to break away from the recycled. Performance art can do that.
My 80-year-old mother will not buy her heart medicine because it cost more than she can pay with social security. She is America.
I'm still very aware of the violence in our culture, more so than other people. I know where it comes from when someone is trying to suppress someone else, sometimes they fight back.
At one point, when I was 20 and living in Kentucky, I got shot – it was a land dispute over six inches of property that ran a hundred yards through my grandfather's land. It was really over the honor of my family and that of another family.
The act is truth. Nothing that was ever recorded is truth. Nothing that was ever said is truth. Only the act.
All good performance pieces have some philosophical validity. That's the difference between mere theater and performance art.
Performance art can involve the audience with taste, smell and sounds not available with electronic media and not practical with conventional theater. This is due to the usually small audience.
I've been in elementary education for years and my belief is that Christmas pageants in schools are little more than conditioning kids for the Christian religion.
Basically the school system sets you up with what it wants to set you up with. They're really good at it. I think they're too good. Problem is, what they're doing is conditioning kids to merely accept the culture at hand. But the rebels won't accept it.
A performance art piece is unprecedented. It is difficult to censor since it has a good possibility of never being done before.
My parents were laborers so we lived on South Park, which was a low-income region of Seattle. You had a choice – you either joined or formed a gang or you let others bully you.
My art and poetry is very political now. Because you've got to find that truth within you and express yourself. Somewhere out there, I know, there will be people who will listen.
I believe that I understand gangs better than others. Because they're formed out of necessity. They're formed by people to keep from being suppressed.
Maybe it will be a great thing when the Baby Boomers finally die out. In real life, it's not a matter of the good guys or the bad guys. Rather, it's big numbers and small numbers that do the counting.
I was a gang leader. Although, it was a gang for defensive purposes. It was not a gang to sell drugs.