In many ancient and past cultures, hair was the portal to the ‘source’, the fabric that interwove and linked them with the natural and ethereal worlds. It was deeply infused with rich symbolism and invocation, cautionary stories and richly woven tales of wealth and beauty, and sometimes of tragedy, death, and transformation. Hair in the contemporary world is still inherent with symbolism including status, cultural context, religion, and as a statement to both personal and societal liberation.
In the performance ‘Singing my hair into gold’, we are invited to see a performative re-enactment of these stories. It is an offering and statement of surrender and adaptability, transformation, and resurgence. A chorus of humming can be heard as the bees in their masses ‘sing’ their incantations, promising productivity, fertility, sweetness, and community collaboration, as the hair is ritually stripped away, spun into yarn, and returned through to the start of the performance.

We can further explore other ways of looking by seeing hair past its depiction of cultural value and personal identity; by reconstructing and finding prosperity and abundance in a practical item, perhaps something of banal or mundane, underappreciated or overlooked of value, such as a simple string or piece of yarn. With these fibres we have the potential to spin endless possibility and creation into existence.

Singing my hair into gold

Artist:

Tailor Winston

Year:

2020

Medium:

Video performance

Duration:

23 minutes