Wednesday, April 18, 2007

It's Show Time!

Life is on the wire. The rest is just waiting.
– Karl Wallender, high-wire artiste (1905 – 1978)
At the last minute, I decided to fly rather than drive to Melbourne. I wrapped my framed paintings in plastic bubble paper and packed them in a sturdy cardboard box to be checked in as luggage. Then I collected all the objects I might need for the 'low-fi' version of Sex Tourist – including my 'signature' pink panties, half a dozen Polaroids, a stained singlet, soiled panty liner, strap-on dildo and bulbous anal probe – and threw them into an already over-filled leather handbag. God knows what airport security will think if I'm asked to present the bag for inspection.
Collectors interested in my new watercolours – now titled Kelly, The First Time, Nos. 1 to 5 – were calling me even before I headed to the airport. This bodes well for the show and the rest of the series, which I'll continue when I return home. First, though, I have to get through today, starting with a very long, tedious hanging and set-up punctuated by frantic sorties to local supermarkets and department stores to find 'consumables' such as corn starch (an ingredient of the fake semen L.A. porn' film-makers sometimes use for close-ups of the so-called 'money shot'), cigarettes, water-based lube, and cheap lipstick for the installation. I'll try to get an hour or two of rest before bathing and getting dressed for the formal opening of Art Melbourne, this evening, but I suspect it will be close to midnight before I crawl into bed again.
I have to be up very early tomorrow morning. I am appearing briefly on Today, Channel Nine's national early morning TV show, sometime between seven and nine a.m. In readiness for the 'video-op', a small fleet of Renault cars are parked in a semi-circle at the entrance to the event. Each has my stencil-like self-portrait in silver or hot pink vinyl on its hood and beneath it, my surname in large, upper case letters.
"The other artists here will hate you," my gallerist whispered to me as I stood looking at them. I just shrugged. Fuck 'em, I thought. What else is new?

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