donald gensler

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castle project

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installation: A Birdcatcher's Nest

site: Power Plant building, 233 N. Bread St., Philadelphia, PA

date: 2002

narrative: A person who seeks power over a group often controls a military force and has many bases of operation. This is a simulation of what a "birdcatcher's" hideout might look like as he seeks the Castle. On the screen is silent language instruction. The uniform and supplies are appropriately stored. Human birdcalls sound from within the fabric tubes.

performance/ installation: The Birdcatcher Feeds, The Birdcatcher Speaks

site: Morgan Building, University of Pennsylvania

date: 2001

narrative: The installation included video of birds and recorded fake bird sounds made by people. The "birdcatcher" fed an imaginary bird. He slowly became frustrated by the process and turned to force-feeding and aggression toward the audience. I had just visited Chile and Latvia that past year. In each country I learned how a dictatorship (Chile) and communism (Latvia) controlled and manipulated an entire population. The "birdcatcher's" performance was my reaction to that experience.

installation: 7, 12, 5

site: Meyerson Gallery, University of Pennsylvania

date: 2001

narrative: Each piece attaches or simulates a specific body part. 7,12, 5 are code for the bones of the cervical, thoracic, and lumbar regions of the vertebral column. These are the ludicrous instruments of our hero who searches for the Castle. His body is not sufficient enough for the task, so he must create devices to help in the struggle.

sculpture: Ear Extenders

date: 2001

medium: uniform fabric, rubber tubbing, wood, plex, speakers and wiring

narrative: This sound recording device rests in a wood and plex case. The tubes allow the viewer to hear sounds recorded during the Ear Extenders performance.