Supertramps
(click thumbnails for high resolution images)


Supertramps

mixed media with crickets,
lights, & additional audio
42" x 36" x 18"
2003

A collaboration with Dr. Lucia Jacobs, animal psychologist at UC Berkeley. The sets for Giuseppe Verdi's opera "La Traviata" (trans.: "the woman who strayed", or "the tramp") were built in miniature, and singing male crickets were invited to play all roles, in Shakespearean style. Crickets are known as "supertramps" in biology, a term coined by Jared Diamond to describe a species that will easily colonize and proliferate in a wide range of new environments, but competes poorly with slow colonizing species. Images show two views of the full stage, and then the four sets: Violetta's Paris salon, Alfredo & Violetta's country house, Flora's soirée, and Violetta's bedroom. Produced as part of an invitational residency at the Headlands Center for the Arts.