Hidden treasures discovered while digging through Frank Moore's huge archives.

Tag: Annie Sprinkle (page 1 of 1)

Dotty

Excerpted from Frank’s letter to Annie Sprinkle, February 17, 1987, describing Dotty, the character Annie would be playing at Frank’s first Franklin Furnace performance, INTIMATE CAVE, May 14, 1987.

For about eight years, I have been working with the character whom you are playing. I call her Dotty. You remind me of the woman who originally played Dotty. I have tried to get other people to play Dotty in different pieces, with not much success. They have lacked the depth and freedom and control needed to pull it off.

Dotty is a zombie, mentally retarded … has no I.Q., no intellect. But she is not dumb. She is very slow. She takes a couple of minutes to waddle several feet. She does not speak. But she makes loud, long, slow laughs without obvious reason. She makes funny faces and distorts her body [Howie Mandel may have copied her moves]. She gets sidetracked very easily. A bit of dust can stop her in her tracks as she focuses to explore it. In a strange way, she is very focused. Once her focus is on you, she is locked on you until her curiosity is satisfied. She is a ball of emotional, innocent curiosity. This gives her a gentle power over people, allowing her to break taboos, sitting on laps, crawling on people, unbuttoning shirts, gently pushing limits.

In this piece, she is looking for warmth, for intense physicalness. She looks for this in the audience at first. She does not force this on people. But she does not settle for less. When she finds that a person has quit going with her into that physical intimacy, she loses interest and moves on to another person.


Dotty Gallery

NYC 1989 Tour!! – Part 4

Frank performed Journey To Lila on two weekends at Franklin Furnace in New York City in June 1989. Here is an excerpt from a letter Frank received from Fred Hatt in 1997, almost 8 years after the performance, who had attended one of those performances. He had just discovered Frank on the web and emailed Frank to introduce himself and tell him about the impact his experience at this performance had on his own work:

I feel like all of these things were potential in my interests and my work at the time in 1989 when I came to experience a journey to the planet Lila with you and your friends.  But I had never seen real experiential magic presented as art before – not distanced by anthropology, not burdened by cosmological mysticism or pretensions of grandeur.  You showed how simple magical consciousness really is, and how effective in opening people up, expanding their freedom and then going beyond that to make them feel their connectedness.  The steps of the journey peeled away layer after layer of psychological armor with scalpel precision.  As an artist, I had always felt isolated, a loner, awkward dealing with other people, although I craved collaboration.  Some things I learned from your performance changed me immediately, but others grew over a period of long years, nurtured through my own trial and error and through all I learned from so many others along the way, and are growing still.  I am no master of magic, but I am free and live my life in joy, and though I enjoy solitude, I no longer feel so isolated or awkward and I love to work with others.

… I am glad that you are still spreading subversive joy and I am glad to be in communication with you since you are one of my heroes and teachers!

Fred

Photo by Annie Sprinkle
Photo by Annie Sprinkle
Photo by Annie Sprinkle
Photo by Annie Sprinkle

Photos by Annie Sprinkle

Franklin Furnace Press Release announcing the performance
Ad in the Village Voice
An ad for the performance in the Village Voice