a poor replica (2015)

a poor replica (2015) by Laura Dee Milnes. Photo by Ben Ripley

A durational performance/installation at BEG, BORROW, STEAL #7, Safehouse 1, London on 3 December 2015.

In a damp and dank living room at 23 Beck Road, a faltering siren wallows among an odyssey of paraphernalia, practicing pouting in preparation for a debut. A dilettante, applying pan stick to cheekbone and scratching eyebrows into flesh. Pumping collagen and spreading butter to create a sheen, a shine, a glass, a light, a catch. An endless circle of lips, a puckering, swollen and engorged ring of red in the face. The application of hair to skin smarts and burns as this divinely human entity scrapes tendrils into locks, spreading sweat across brow and smudging colour into eyelids. Fluttering fake lashes and underarm hair congealed in lotion and grease. Powder pounded into dust and mixed, exchanged and interlocked with fluids and effluvia, making effervescence and excreta in abounds, and all at once. A sigil, drawn across the skin and over muscle, bulging in potential to erect monuments and smash them to the ground. This dungeon, a personal paradise and still; the flames from which the phoenix rise, a charcoaled, kohly hole in Hackney where a being is born of a loving act. Rigid with devotion to a deity who has all ideas, and none at all of this homage – a large and fitting tribute. Deep inside, the organs and the flesh repent, betraying themselves and desiring their union with each other and an/other, an opening out, an invitation inside, into a body about to become a multiple. No borders exist in this fetid, curtained room, reeking of obsession, love, lust and pain. A bare breast and salty skin reflect what little light seeps in through ragged, fibrous nets. A one, inside, a self pours out, so hot and sorrowful, bent over and waiting for an entrance. Glistening fingers trace the peaks and troughs of a body poised to perform, to be, to give and to be taken. Creases filled, lines joined to lines and grooves to grooves, the pieces fit – a smoothness, a unity of flesh and fine, fine hairs. The sex, unsoft and rippling to the touch, succulent, anodyne and fragrant with ‘x’s, ‘why’s and howls of wanton wish.

Photos by Ben Ripley
Photos by Olga Koroleva
Photos by Tom Jackson
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