Cry a la Jack (2005)

Cry a la Jack (2005) HIDVL

This is a video documentation of a performance by/for an intimate audience, marked by conversational and relational interactions. ‘Cry a la Jack’ is a performance/homage to queer experimental filmmaker Jack Smith. Carmelita Tropicana explains to the audience how she became a performance artist, and she offers her ‘performance art manifesto’ and her definition of performance art: ‘Performance art just changes your perception. Objects that you thought are no longer the same objects.’ Bringing together the body and life and death, she remembers Jack Smith’s presence everywhere, and thanks him for making her ‘the ‘thesbian’ that I am today.’ Remembering that Jack prompted her to cry on stage, she cuts an onion to provoke tears. She asks audience members to take a whiff of the onion and asks what would they cry about. She finally burst into song remembering Jack and, in doing so, bringing his presence close to her: ‘You light up my days and fill my life with can’t be wrong when it feels so, you, you, Jack, light up my life.’


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Additional Info

  • Title: Cry a la Jack
  • Holdings: video (HIDVL)
  • Duration: 0:16:19
  • Language: English, Spanish
  • Date: 2005
  • Location: Grimm Rosenfeld Gallery, New York City.
  • Type-Format: performance
  • Credits: Carmelita Tropicana, creator.