Two Drovers to stage unorthodox, independent art events

Reese Baker and Cady Wollenberg
Reese Baker (left) and Cady Wollenberg (right) continue university distinct tradition

Two students at the University of Science and Arts of Oklahoma will exercise an unorthodox approach to the conception and exhibition of artwork in independent performances June 28 starting at 5 p.m. Reese Baker and Cady Wollenberg will debunk audience expectations in provocative, culturally relevant ways through comedy and the disruption of privacy.

Avoiding a typical art venue, Baker invites the public to witness him in the midst of a weeklong performance in his own home at 2010 W. Utah Ave. in Chickasha from 5 – 8:30 p.m. Deconstructing how smartphones and social media have upset the entire concept of privacy, “The Dancer at the Top of the Staircase” uses strategically placed two-way mirrors to literally put Baker on display and erase the walls between artist and observer.

“This piece deconstructs the safe barriers of the screen and the virtual, exchanging it for absolute presence,” said Baker. “Life isn’t hyper-magnified. It simply is. Following in the footsteps of Dada thought processes and Alan Kaprow’s philosophies on the seamlessness between art and life, this work truly is about nothing, and that’s what makes it so meaningful.”

Wollenberg will approach the question of art and life playfully in her stand-up comedy routine “Pink Drink from Starbucks,” beginning at 6:30 p.m. in the Davis Hall Little Theatre. A commentary on the underrepresentation of women in art and comedy, her show combines the two genres to demonstrate the remarkable power for female entertainers that culminates in a mix of humor and performance that centers around everyday experiences.

“I was once told that my life sucks just enough for it to be funny,” said Wollenberg. “I feel like everyone’s life sucks in one way or another and being able to laugh about those things is what makes life bearable.”

Both Baker and Wollenberg continue USAO’s long tradition of innovation, interdisciplinary knowledge and critical thinking through these performances that test not only the limits of artistic media, but also the identity, role and relationship the artist has with the viewer.

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