David Bologna began their artistic career with extensive work in community and professional musical theater productions across their hometowns of New Orleans and Austin. At fourteen, David was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Featured Actor in a Musical for their role of Michael in the original Broadway production of Billy Elliot the Musical. Their concentration, Deviant Bodies of the Arts, Media, and Word, explores normative structures of power fashioned through the body; it investigates how bodies who do not conform to heterosexual standards can enact their own abject queerness as a mode of survival and subversion. With a minor in performance studies, David’s passion for the ontological, epistemological, and phenomenological fuels a search for affect in their work, their body, and their performance of everyday life.
In a participatory performance of self-fashioning, the artist invites spectators to a game of seeing and dressing up. To explore the relationship of self/other and subject/object, the artist turns their private act of getting dressed inside out to the public. Spectators are instructed to choose from the artist’s wardrobe and dress the performer’s body as they please. Spectators then document the constructed look on one of three backdrops and upload the portraits to the artist’s own social media page. This transformation of the individualized ritual of dressing into a collective act manifests the fundamentally relational and intersubjective language of clothing. As the audience dresses the performer, the particularized vestimentary body that participants envision and actualize belongs at once to the artist and to the spectator.