Miss Taken Identities

Livestream Performance
Friday, July 30, 2021 at 5:00pm EST
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Join us here on PARTICIPANT AFTER DARK for a live-stream performance in anticipation of Marja Samsom’s second publication, Miss Taken Identities. Miss Taken Identities features new vignette performances that highlight techniques and interests that Samsom revisits throughout her career, and as chronicled in her book.

A companion to Samsom’s Diary of a Forgotten Actress, 1972-1979, a publication curated by Inez & Vinoodh in 2015, we celebrate the next chapter with a performance activating a scripted environment including props, sets, and films. Samsom began casting herself as Miss Behave and Miss Kerr in her performance-based photographs and films in the early ‘70s, producing Super 8 films inspired by illusionist and filmmaker George Melies. Pin-up, housewife, diva – a repertoire of self-objectification provided directorial authority. The ‘Forgotten Actress’ deployed Polaroids/snapshots served as evidence of a living artform – a life performance, inspired by the art and friendship of Bas Jan Ader.

Marja Samsom lives and works in New York City. In the ‘70s, Samsom exhibited her work in various venues in Los Angeles, New York, Amsterdam and elsewhere in Europe. In 1976, she performed the piece Miss Kerr in Amsterdam at de Appel Arts Centre. In 1980, she traveled to New York for Dutch Treat, an exchange that Wies Smals set up with Martha Wilson from Franklin Furnace. Samsom designed the poster, and performed at Franklin Furnace. She decided to stay in New York, and subsequently opened The Kitchen Club and Chibi’s Bar from 1990-2010. In the fall of 2011, she started her residency at The Clocktower, culminating in the storytelling performance/ installation Shrine. In 2016, Samsom celebrated her artist’s book, Diary of a Forgotten Actress 1972-1979, curated by Inez & Vinoodh with Miss Behave a set of performances activating a scripted environment including props, set, photographs, and films at Participant Inc. Recent solo projected presented online and in New York LMAK Gallery, La Galleria at La Mama, and Club Berlin.

Background video: Marja Samsom, If It Takes Forever I Will Wait for You, excerpt. [A short video loop of a blue scarf with white polka dots blowing in the wind on a sand beach.]