News — 16 Oct 2019
On October 25th the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam premieres the performance commission Jason’s Crazy Night by Ann Hirsch. Hirsch is one of the foremost contemporary artists working with themes related to gender, sexuality and feminism. Telling a comically sordid tale of toxic masculinity, Jason’s Crazy Night lampoons male machismo through the story of Hirsch's porn-addicted male alter ego, Jason Biddies.
Using humor as a tool to disarm, the play Jason’s Crazy Night takes the structure of the Charles Dickens tale A Christmas Carol to tell the story of a pornography-addicted, self-proclaimed “bro” Jason Biddies, and his penchant for porn. In the play, Biddies (played by Hirsch) encounters apparitions representing his past, present, and future, as did Ebenezer Scrooge in A Christmas Carol. These apparitions are embodied by three porn stars who take various forms and who help him understand his relationships to pornography, women, and his sometimes-toxic masculinity.
Ann Hirsch is a video and performance artist who examines the influence of technology on popular culture and gender. Hirsch’s work often centers on uncomfortable but relatable subjects such as pornography, shame, sexual development, and gender roles. Even though online pornography is consumed by a staggeringly high number of people worldwide, its effects on sexual development are rarely spoken about openly. As pornography often narrativizes racial stereotypes and gender roles, and frequently depicts violence against women and people of color, its existence in popular media is overdue for public debate.
Based in Los Angeles, Hirsch has had solo shows at MIT List Visual Arts center, Arcadia Missa in London and First Look, the online project space of the New Museum in New York. In 2013 Rhizome awarded her the commission for Playground, which debuted at the New Museum and was performed in South London Gallery at Goldsmiths College.
Jason’s Crazy Night is the 2019 performance commission of the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam. Each year, the Stedelijk Museum develops a major new performative work with a selected artist or collective. Last year, the Stedelijk awarded the commission to the New York-based collective CFGNY which created the performance Fake Fashion 3. In 2017, the museum invited Alicia Frankovich to create the performance Atlas of the Living World.
Note for editors:
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Performance Jason’s Crazy Night:
25 October: 8 pm - 9.30 pm
26 October: 1 pm - 2.15 pm and 4 pm - 5.15 pm
The videos Jason's Past, Jason's Present and Jason's Future, which can be seen during the performance, were commissioned by KRIEG in Hasselt as part of Ann Hirsch's solo exhibition Jason's Room, on view until 16 November 2019.