Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Bouquat On* (Review)


For the past seven years, Abby Walton (along with collaborators Beth Houfek, Sarah Saltzman and others) has been throwing a Valentine's party (qua gallery-sized "installation"/qua all night dance-off) she calls a "bouquat." Says Walton, the bouquat originates in parties her parents and their friends used to throw around Valentine's day in Columbus, Ohio. In the past the bouquat has had the (often twin) themes of: swans (Swanny Boquat), bears/berries (Beary Bear Boquat), weather/fast food (Windy's Taco Tornado), mandables and chocolate (Cocoa Clap). This year's bouquat is called Taj Mahal Twilight, and features (who can guess?) the motifs Taj Mahal and stars.

In addition to making elaborate wall and ceiling hangings, wallpaper, baked goods, kissing booths, and playing dance music (generally Hip-Hop and more recently Reggaeton) each year Walton and her collaborators also provide party favors after their theme. This year's favor is a collaboration between myself and Walton, a horoscope which I post below.

Combining folk-"craftiness" with art school "knowing" the bouquat (like much of Walton's work) is an original negotiation of recent gallery-sized installations/environments (of Whitney Biennial or Chelsea galleries) and the more traditional design sensibilities of the party thrower. What makes a difference in this later category is the sheer amount of work and attention to detail the artist gives to the bouquat, an event for which she prepares the entire year round, and for which she is helped by many hands (gathering materials, printing, baking, hanging).

Among other projects Walton is currently at work on, you may also check her ongoing self-portaiture (she has taken a Polaroid of herself nearly every day for the past 5 years), and her "Ponathons," a sewing circle where instead of sewing the participants make miniature pom-poms from a variety of yarrns and other materials. Walton is also the maker of any number of limited edition books, including our collaboration Tears Are These Veils (Wild Horses of Fire, 2004).
ARIES - March 21 to April 20.
There is no more need to war. Your spirit itself is a sign of moving, fatalistically current. Blinking, believing you are. You are the planet closest to the sun and said to be reddened. Tonight you will discover things as they are.

TAURUS - between April 21 to May 21.
You have so many means to be bright. And wistful on this current day of stars. On this current day when you are going to belong to someone. Beauty holds its own rejoinders.

GEMINI - May 22 to June 21 Mercury.
Don’t divide men. Men and women Mercury. Your mirror’s too tidy to be the twin. To be the twin of discourse, of conversation. Your place or mine? You give birth to yourself but there is another who awaits you nearby.

CANCER - between June 22 to July 22.
Perpetual betrothals. Moons suggest the words of your ascensions, the degrees of your downs. Your magnetic directness is a telepathy of noon-tide. Kisses are now or never.

LEO - July 23 to August 23. Their keywords are I will, Sun.
Your keywords are I will. You will be my courage. My gravity. We must split. And sever tongues. To become the set. Is always was. To play at grace. To love becoming one only.

VIRGO - between August 24 to September 22.
I have analyzed once and for all. The moon and the stars. The stars inside. Your love is not just for the future. It is the true love of experiment. A present surpassed by your patience.

LIBRA - September 23 to October 23.
If only you were the world. The world would be a balance. Of the pachyderm on the tortoise and the tortoise on a pearl. That is, you are the green world. The green world of latest things. Everyone reveling in your love.

SCORPIO - October 24 to November 22.
Be thankful. You who desire Pluto. Sometimes you would like to use whips and sometimes a feather boa. Mainly you see the thing you want, however far away. And don’t tend to hold on too long, equivocity being your advantage.

SAGITTARIUS - November 23 to December 21
You see all. That much is clear. Not only your waking dreams, but a vision of the one you seek tonight. And beyond the night, the all. Opening yourself to someone new.
Riding events to their end.

CAPRICORN - December 22 to January 20
Instruments are not of the essence. They only seem of the essence when you want to predict the stars. Let go of someone old (dying stars) and embrace someone new.

AQUARIUS - January 21 to February 19.
Make your feelings known. But do not know only your feelings. When there is another near you to love. Knowing what they feel too.

PISCES - February 20 to March 20.
Believe in pieces and peaceably believe. You will go home together. You will go home across time with your beloved.

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