An evening of free-spirited and psychologically intense performing and visual art featuring the work of Linda Carmella Sibio, who was diagnosed with schizophrenia in 1977, and is known for her cathartic performance and visual art that explores madness and creativity. The evening will start with an original new performance piece by Sibio, “Human-Pig Hybrid.” The work is a nonlinear exploration that juxtaposes cultural notions of “the pig” with mental illness. The night also features a performance by the Spontaneous Combustion Choir, conducted by O-Lan Jones. Jones is the award-winning composer and artistic director of Overtone Industries. Sibio will also launch a new mixed media art exhibition at the end of the event, Schizophrenic Brain Trust.
“Human-Pig Hybrid” –
Sibio’s opening night performance piece explores what happens when a giant brain meets a human-pig hybrid. The new 30-minute original work is a metaphor for living in a chaotic and violent world, filled with contradictions and abuse. The nonlinear exploration juxtaposes cultural notions of “the pig” with mental illness (i.e., pigs are generally kept in filthy pens and are fattened-up, only to be slaughtered in a brutal fashion.)
Spontaneous Combustion Choir –
Conducted by O-Lan Jones, the Spontaneous Combustion Choir creates instant improvised chorale music. The group’s singing method builds harmonic chords, weaves melodies, and integrates rhythms, with singers who incorporate basic vowel sounds and no words; resulting in instant, cohesive, a cappella chorale music.
Schizophrenic Brain Trust –
Sibio’s visual art exhibit, Schizophrenic Brain Trust, explores the beauty and drama of a dysfunctional brain. Her giant 12-foot paper mâché brain sculpture and intricate pen and ink drawings, which look a bit like etchings, portray the brain in various states, from contemplation to confrontation and confusion. In the work, the schizophrenic artist asks, “Is my brain damaged or just different?” The brain is a personal mystery, sometimes a friend, and sometimes the enemy.
Saturday, January 17 @ 8:30pm
$20 general admission / $15 members, students, seniors
Linda Carmella Sibio, Event Producer, Performer & Visual Artist –
Linda Carmella Sibio works in performance and visual art. She is very much interested in the fringe of society and how it affects culture as a whole. Her work addresses strong social themes such as homelessness, mental illness, suicide, mass murder, gangs, drug addiction, and prostitution. Sibio draws upon her formal training in the visual arts, theatre, and interdisciplinary art. Her performance pieces utilize film/video, music, installation, costumes, objects, kinetic elements, and text. Ultimately, in her performance work, she is interested in the raw power of human emotional contact.
From 1985 to 1996, Sibio taught the mentally disabled on the streets of Los Angeles as well as performed ten original interdisciplinary pieces that were extravagant and adventurous in their presentation. While in Los Angeles, she founded and worked with a group of mentally disabled people on Skid Row called “Operation Hammer.” Sibio also co-founded the Los Angeles Poverty Department. In 1997, she relocated to the Joshua Tree community and created another performance group, with Bezerk Productions, called the Cracked Eggs (2001-2008). While working with these organizations, over many years, she developed her philosophical ideas and, in 2010, started writing a related book, called Reflections in a Broken Mirror. Sibio’s passion for using the symptoms of mental illness as a structure for works of art has become a personal obsession.
Sibio has received over 20 grants and awards including a Lannan Foundation Grant, the Wynn Newhouse Award, and a Rockefeller MAP Fund Award. Her work as been seen at Brussels Contemporary Art Fair, Walker Art Center, Franklin Furnace, VSAarts at the United Nations Headquarters, VSAarts at the Kennedy Center, Armory NYC, Highways Performance Space, Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions, Track 16, REDCAT Studio, and Scope Los Angeles at the Standard Hotel. Sibio has received media coverage in Artweek, ArtNet, High Performance Magazine, Drama-Logue, New York Times, Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, LA Reader, LA Style, MinnPost, Clinical Psychiatry News, and Schizophrenia Bulletin. She is represented by Andrew Edlin Gallery in New York.
O-Lan Jones, Spontaneous Combustion Choir Conductor –
O-Lan Jones is an award-winning actor, sound designer, writer, and composer. She is the Artistic Director of Overtone Industries, a company that creates new mythological operas and theatricals. Most recently, the first phase of Iceland, written in collaboration with Irish singer/songwriter Emmett Tinley, was featured in REDCAT’s New Original Works Festival. Jones is most often recognized from her roles in Tim Burton’s movies, as well as on Seinfeld and in Natural Born Killers.
Bezerk Productions –
The purpose of 501(c) 3 Bezerk Productions is to educate the public on the interdisciplinary art of persons with severe mental disabilities and to provide educational art opportunities for this disadvantaged and underserved population, as well as the general public.