Writing Off the Walls 2022

Creativity in the age of CoVID

Brought to you by Studio Theater in Exile & Hudson Valley MOCA

The Halls Where It Happened - Robert Miss

Based on Zsolt Bodoni's Painting, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2016

Bum Bum-Bum Baaaaaaaaah

Bar the door.

Run off the floor.

The barriers are breached.

“We’re here on orders of the king.

Come down, Daniel, to the lions’ den.

Smell the blood running through the halls.

Try to save the portraits we’re ripping from the walls.

We will find you, we call you by name.

Saving our country is our claim.

Besides the desecrations,

we’re here for assassinations.”

While they hunt for our leaders…

Hid in the gallery is a cinnamon Mom,

Suckling dark babies at each breast,

Singing to them softly under her breath,

“ You are noir portant jolie, the hope for our liberty”

Coat Of Arms - Gene Tashoff

Read by Jim Dirlam
Based on Zsolt Bodoni's Painting, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2016

Do you admire this uniform of mine? Or does it push you away?

Well, it was designed to do both.

To suit the stature as well as the burden of my responsibility during World War II.

Which was, at first, to protect and keep a nation, then two, then three,

then an entire continent from being overrun by the most murderous invaders in history.

I took it upon myself to be both a will and a way to resist a hellishly evil enemy

out to rule the world by squashing those living in it.

I had to. Eventually, we all had to. There was no alternative.

Thus, I dressed to be formidable against

those out to squash and bury everyone in their way.

I needed to lead, to inspire, to build strength

and plan for fierce resistance before we,

all free nations, were overrun.

Thus, in every pocket of every fine jacket,

I carried a weapon,

be it a pistol, a grenade, garroting wire, or written

words of encouragement, imploring my

comrades to fight on for their country’s lives

in the case of my death.

I stood proud and strong, and, yes, defiant -

to encourage them to do the same.

Because they had to.

If you are willing to do the same for your nation in your times of threat, I salute you.

Yes, I am a Hidden Child - Aliza Erber

Based on Zsolt Bodoni's Painting, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2016

TODAY I AM GRATEFUL

TODAY I AM THANKFUL

TODAY I AM HAPPY

For I am here, I stand with you.

TODAY I AM GRATEFUL
TODAY I AM THANKFUL
TO BE HERE,

And not there

TO BE HERE

And not in the underground bunker.

TO BE HERE

As I stand with you.

YES, I AM A HIDDEN CHILD.
IN A BUNKER, UNDERGROUND, IN THE WOODS
LOOKING UP, BROWN MUD,

My mouth taped shut,

MORE SAUCER EYES STARING
IN THE DARKNESS ALL AROUND.
OHHH,
I DIDN’T KNOW THE SKY WOULD BE SO VAST,
I DIDN’T KNOW IT WOULD BE SO BLUE,

When I emerged above at the age of two.

BUT MY MEMORIES ARE SMALL AND DARK
NOT REAL, I FEAR…

But there,

IN A PLACE I CAN HARDLY REACH,

But there,

DEEP WITHIN MY PSYCHE
AND THE TIGHT LID HOLDING THEM WITHIN

Has loosened,

AND A JAGGED FRAGMENT ESCAPES, AND THEN ANOTHER,
BUT NOT ENOUGH I FEAR, TO MAKE ME WHOLE

Not enough to make me whole.

SO, I CRY FOR THE INFANT TUCKED AWAY,
AWAY FROM LOVE, AWAY FROM SUNSHINE, AWAY FROM SMILES,

AND AWAY FROM LIFE.

IN A MUDDY BUNKER BENEATH THE GROUND,

SAFE THEN, THEY SAID,
BUT NEVER SAFE, NOT THEN, NOT TODAY.

BUT TODAY, I AM GRATEFULI AM HAPPY

TO BE HERE, STANDING WITH YOU.

Feel free to navigate through the tabs to hear the recordings/poems of The Halls Where It Happened, Coat of Arms, and Yes, I am a Hidden Child. All of these recordings/poems are based on Zsolt Bodoni's painting, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2016.

Bodoni, Blue Uniform (Tito), 2010
Blue Uniform (Tito), 2010

Zsolt Bodoni

Hungarian, born 1975

Blue Uniform (Tito), 2010 Oil and acrylic on canvas

86.6 x 76.8 inches

In his first U.S. solo exhibition, titled “Yesterday’s Heroes, Tomorrow’s Fools,” Zsolt Bodoni, who is Romanian-born but Hungarian by descent, presented what initially seemed a modest exploration of painting’s formal issues. Soon, however, visual excavation of the images’ gray, washy layers revealed figures immersed in hazy, romantic narratives of post-Soviet-bloc Eastern Europe.
The past cannot be dismantled in a single stroke.

Zsolt Bodoni received his MFA from the Hungarian Academy of Fine Arts in Budapest, Hungary. Selected solo shows include: The Shining Path and King Give Us Soldiers, Green Art Gallery, Dubai, UAE; Remastered, Brand New Gallery, Milan, Italy Gods and Mortals, Mihai Nicodim Gallery, Los Angeles, Foundries of Ideologies, Ana Cristea Gallery, New York, USA and Monuments, FA Projects, London, UK; He has been shown in several important group shows including: THE NUDE in the XX & XXI CENTURY, S|2 Gallery, London, Turning Points, The Twentieth Century Through 1914, 1939, 1989, Hungarian National Gallery, Budapest, Hungary Defaced, Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, Boulder, COOL Nightfall, Galerie Rudolfinum, Prague, Czech Republic; Leipzig Walkabout, Galerie Eigen + Art, Leipzig, Germany; Uncertain Terrain, Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville, TN; Show Me a Hero, Calvert 22, London, UK; 15 Hungarian and Romanian Painters, Plan B, Cluj, Romania. His work has been featured and reviewed in Art in America, Flash Art and The New York Times. In 2009 he was selected for the "Top 100 Emerging Artists" by Flash Art International.

https://www.artnews.com/art-in-america/aia-reviews/zsolt-bodoni-60370/

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