Respect. Mandate> Berlin. Summer. 09 – Alexa Wilson

Video art is the new poetry and autumn is the new spring and language is an old bridge…and no one knows what’s going on but they walk anyway. Down lanes of lines, out of time, forever across time. Is it the ‘todesmarsch’ (deathmarch)? I want to respect you and me and everyone I know and don’t know anyway. Because I can. I peer in my mind into a hole where they burnt books that anyone can and does just walk over and history spun on an axis so far here so far away, I have a lot to learn. So I turn. Another page, another summer burning. And realise I don’t need to rhyme or make up time, I can fall and keep falling and get up again. Crawling. And some people care, and some don’t. I care I’m afraid. It’s my spiritual dare.

So you stare.

We walk between walls real or imagined in the dead zone and wonder, will I be shot? Will a dog eat me? Will I crush this dog with my bike or be crushed by a car and end up in a coma or with a broken collar bone? Where am I hiding or running to or from? A repressive regime inside me, inside all of us? S/he asks as s/he kisses.

And I press down on my bike with my palm and lean onto it and fall backwards over it and hit my head on a pole. Because I can. And I plan. A better day, a better way. But I take the ticket anyway. My teacher asks me ‘How do you find this graffiti?’ (in German as an exercise) and I respond (in German as an exercise) ‘I find it interesting. Berlin is one big painting.’ She agrees. Let’s paint on the skin of dawn, let’s transform the dawn. Before it turns too dark.

‘Memory is fragile, garbage lasts forever’ says the choreographer’s website. In hindsite, my hindskin peels off and I cower from the wind and I scream. Maybe. ‘I’m pushing up daisies’. All is degraded and memory can be plastic, brittle spittle. But I’ll spin for the record, let you spin me right round baby on this upside down Earth, spin shit and spin out…like a clown with a frown. But I won’t turn you down. Not really. Really really. I’m open out minded, and money goes around…and around and around and around. Pro-found. Inside eyes. In the wars, open doors. Plant this plant for your grandma and grandpa. There are scars on their hearts. There’s a scar in this city, like a severed left and right brain hemisphere…which side am I on?

You’re in ‘die Totezone’…(deadzone), oh of course I am. You have no such place. ‘She’ stands against a building smoking a cigarette with a Turkish wedding dress on as they walk by and stare. A guy comes up to her and spray paints on the wall to her left ‘He’, on her torso and wedding dress an Anarchy ‘A’ and ‘rt’ on the wall to her right. He stands back and takes a photo of her/it. She looks at him for a moment and bursts into tears. He doesn’t know what to do…he looks around in a panic. He then goes to her and tries to comfort her (yes good idea). She violently pushes him away…again he panics. Suddenly, it cuts to them swinging off the arms of a nude sculpture in the park of a Greek statue. They’re like children again, laughing and playing. In the sky a plane pulling a sign says ‘I respect you and me anyway.’

It’s not a command, those days and nights are long gone…like this scar of a wall in the heart of this city. A memory fading. Something in a book. Don’t give me that look. Yes I know nothing; I’m naive and a sook. But fucken give it up bitches and bastards…you know you wanna hook.

I ask in German ‘what is the day of murder?’ (oops. I mean ‘day of the dead’, like um, you know, from Mexico). It is everyday, yip, everyday. Is both, a host to life, a backstabbing history turning, a knife. But I will respect me and you and everyone we know and don’t know, everyday, if i can (like a can picked up off the ground or taken from my hand and recycled by the homeless to make money), even if the institutions of art these days say a plastic can is art and not a heart is art, because I can. Cause I heArt.


Alexa Wilson is a choreographer/performance artist who also writes and makes video. Her solo ‘Weg: A-Way’ won 4 Awards in the Auckland Fringe 2011. She has been commissioned by the Auckland Arts Festival to pitch for the next festival with the Auckland Arts Festival Award. She had a Goethe Institute Scholarship to study in Berlin where she lived for nearly 2 years recently. She has made interdisciplinary dance for 10 years, danced for Douglas Wright among others, won ‘Best Emerging Choreographer’ in the Listener, 2004, has made experimental films and written many published critiques of dance in NZ and Europe.