Presentation on albinism

Eko and Iko

About a week and a half ago an artist friend asked me to do a presentation at her art opening. The title of the show was The Performing Body. What a great way for me to present the beauty of albinism to a curious public.

I titled my piece For Display Purposes. The reason being that each time I go out in public I am in fact on display and in some ways putting on a show. I asked for a platform since I sometimes feel I am on stage and the center of attention, whether I like it or not.

I used the photo of Eko and Iko, two brothers who worked with P. T. Barnum. I saw a caption under the photo in a book that said “for display purposed” so that is what I used.

For my presentation I answered questions that have been asked of me or about me throughout my life. The audience did not hear these questions. They could only listen to my responses and deduce what the questions were. For example: I looked at one invisible person and answered, “Both of my parents are Black. Yes, really. YES. REALLY.” Then I turned to face another invisible person and answered, “No doctor, I am not anemic. Thanks for the iron pill prescription but I don’t really need them.” I went on like this for about 5 to 6 minutes. I ended the presentation by responding to what might be considered a rude comment, then saying, “You have a nice day too. Buh Bye.

The audience responded fairly well. I thought most of my comments were humorous. The audience did chuckle some; but mostly they listened carefully.  One good thing: I did have their attention. I was told that there have been times when a performer is performing and people are talking and pretty much ignoring the person.

It was a fun night. The audience was receptive and as I said, got some of my jokes. I will post the poem and flier later on.

Thank you to Senga Nengudi and RedLine art center and gallery.



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