Report from the Plague Grounds: Stina Kajaso and Action, Yes

by on Aug.31, 2011

As I announced yesterday, we have a new issue of Action, Yes up. It’s an all-Swedish issue edited by the Swedes Anna Thörn and Sara Tuss Efrik. It features one of my favorite writers of the past few months, Stina Kajaso. I don’t have time today to write a whole lot about her, so I’ll post a couple of things I’ve written in the past.

This is what I wrote for Steve Evans’ Attention Span of 2011:

Some of my favorite “poems” of the past year has been the ranty entries on performance artist Stina Kajaso’s ultra-gurlesque blog of roughly biographical writing. If it’s biographical it’s in the best sense: performative, fantastic, ridiculous, excessive, over-the-top. And for people who don’t read Swedish, it’s got hilarious, ridiculous collages and videos (such as the one in which she explains how to put a fake sore on your shoulder and why that’s a pretty thing). She’s as likely to talk about eurovision competition as performance art (which is to say she’s likely to talk a lot about both topics).

And this is what I said in an interview with Chris Higgs on HTML Giant:

I spend a lot of time reading performance artist Stina Kajaso’s blog, Son of Daddy, which includes breakneck rants and writing about everything from dreams about being sexually assaulted by Lady Gaga to her theories about theater (it’s too high culture, the cure: “blood tsunami.”) to documentations of her performances pieces (sad bunny playing a flute inside an industrial elevator etc) and her crazy collages. To me she seems a text-based relative of Ryan Trecartin’s awesome youtube videos. Instead of the conventional academic/modernist discussion about “e-literature” and poetry in the electronic age, her blog comes off as a thrilling performance through the interface of cyberspace (rather than some kind of modernist “deep structure” based on programming).

3 comments for this entry:
  1. Kent Johnson

    Johannes mentions Evans’s Attention Span. Since JG commented at Exoskeleton on my article when it appeared, and since Evans came into the Fence discussion below, hopefully not too much of a stretch to offer the link here. I think there are some reasonable questions posed in the piece, and connections to some broader issues of field politics that’ve been discussed in recent posts at Montevidayo:

  2. Angela

    Hi Johannes, I, too, have really been enjoying Stina’s blog. I have to disagree with you, though, about her work being a text-based relative of Ryan Trecartin’s work (which I am crazy about, too). The only similarities the two share is that they are using the Internet as a basis for their work as performance. In style and spirit, Stina’s work is much more along the lines of Harmony Korine, Chitra Ganesh, and David Lynch’s. I am so glad to have discovered her through you. She has inspired me to retrace my steps and pick back up where I left off 3 years ago in using the Internet as a vehicle for performance, rather than plunking poetry down on a page, as it were, and also to be more honest in my writing.

  3. Johannes

    Yes, I agree Angela, I think it’s the Internet/performance that makes me think of them as related. I’m glad you like it.