Liberty has just posted an interview with MCS performance artist Julie Laffin on her Moving Beyond MCS blog. It’s an excellent interview that explores how Laffin’s creative process has evolved since getting environmental illness. Liberty’s asks some great questions and Laffin’s responses are articulate and insightful. An excerpt from the interview:
Do you have any stories to share of people being unexpectedly supportive or kind to you (as a person or as an artist) since you acquired MCS?
Yes, it has happened many times. One poignant example for me was when my friend Steve Bottoms visited me in Snowflake. He lives in Leeds (England) but came to Chicago to do a lecture and made a special trip to Arizona to see me in July of 2008. Even though he had gone through an elaborate accommodation ritual with personal care products before he arrived I was still not able to tolerate the residual fragrance on his hair and skin. Over the course of our three day visit in rural Arizona, he took many steps on my behalf: leaving his car a half a block from my little rental house, removing his usual shoes and clothes and donning a towel, sealing up his wallet and keys in plastic bag, wearing his contact lenses instead of plastic framed glasses, taking several baths including bathing in baking soda, wearing my husband’s clothes, and eventually shaving his beard and head because after all these steps I was still reacting to a trace of fragrance in his hair. Being artists, we captured most of this process on video and are making a performance about it.
Also, because of the willingness of Clover Morell and Claire Geall Sutton and staff to accomodate my illness, I have been able to continue my curatorial role in Site Unseen, an annual art exhibition at the Chicago Cultural Center. This has been my lifeline and their kindnesses are too numerous to itemize. Also, my husband has changed his whole life to help me.
Bravo to Liberty and Julie for an inspiring interview!