The Bag Lady Manifesta:
In a world that treats Black life as if it’s disposable, The Bag Lady is an urgent reckoning and revelation. She is the accumulation of discarded lives and abandoned histories reeking havoc on the amnesia, the forgetting, the erasure and the silencing. Remembering is the responsibility of the living. Are you doing your work? Because an unacknowledged history produces ghosts.
Performed by Taja Lindley and directed by Tanisha Christie, The Bag Lady Manifesta features an immersive installation of memory followed by a participatory performance ritual where audiences are invited to (re)consider what to let go of, and what to remember – individually and collectively. Through dynamic movement, burlesque, text, soundscapes, ritual and projection Lindley adorns and activates her Black, queer, female body with trash bags to traverse the dumping grounds and shadow side(s) of herself, the audience and the United States.
This work is inspired by previous iterations of Lindley’s Bag Lady work, including This Ain’t A Eulogy: A Ritual for Re-Membering, and was presented as the culmination of Lindley’s residency at Dixon Place. Photo by Kali-Ma Nazarene.
Taja Lindley is a healer, artist and activist, creating socially engaged artwork that reflects and transforms audiences, shifts culture and moves people to action. She uses movement, text, installation, ritual, and burlesque to create immersive works that are concerned with freedom, healing and pleasure. Her artwork has been featured at Spring/Break Art Show, Brooklyn Museum, New York Live Arts, La Mama Theater, in living rooms, classrooms, conferences and public spaces. She has received coverage in ELLE, NY Times, VICE, Blouin Art Info, Afropunk and Colorlines.
Tanisha Christie is an interdisciplinary performing artist and filmmaker. She has performed, produced, directed and taught in traditional and non-traditional spaces in the U.S. and Panama. A member of Actors Equity. She holds a BFA Theatre (Arizona State University), an MA-Media Studies (The New School) and has an LMSW in Clinical Practice (Hunter College). She was a 2015 Target Margin Institute Fellow and is currently an Artist in Residence at Brooklyn Arts Exchange. She is a 2017 MAP grantee for bathtub a performance installation tackling state sanctioned violence, collective grief, and intimacy.