Last Friday Sarah and I met to see Abraham Ferraro perform the Knockout Artist in front of Rochester Contemporary Art Center (RoCo) to a very mixed crowd. The DFC East End Music Festival was going on the same night! You can only imagine the comments I overheard from Rochester’s finest drunks. Ha!
“Many artists torment their bodies and minds to realize an artistic vision. I got burned, bruised, stabbed, sliced, broken, cut, smashed, ridiculed, punched, criticized, and generally abused to bring the Knockout Artist to life, and so what I suffer in the ring is but a small price to pay…for my art.” -from Ferraro’s website
Abe “fought” 12 rounds with his art, literally getting punched in the face, and in the end walked away victorious. I couldn’t help flinch every time that red boxing glove went thrusting forward – there was a steel fist underneath! Ouch! As you may not be able to tell from the photos, the ring he was “fighting” on moved, making things that much more complicated. I uploaded a short video to flickr so you can see the Knockout Artist in action. In case you’re wondering what is going on in the background, that was a push-up contest. Major clash of culture going on as you can see. So funny.
Bleu was the Ring Master and the Round Girl changed every round. Sarah’s friend Tharin volunteered for Round 3 – as seen in the first photo above. I thoroughly enjoyed watching both Ferraro and the crowd, but it was the prep work that was really fascinating. He had so many different brush contraptions that were inserted into the glove (to punch him in the face), but in themselves I thought were interesting objects. The abstract painting, the result of the “fight”, will be on display in RoCo for the next few months. If you’re in the area you should check it out!