Kanouse MEG still hooverdam scaled

My Electric Genealogy, a solo performance by Sarah Kanouse

Artboard 1

Tuesday, October 11, 2022,
6pm - 7:30pm

MAH Garden Room
705 Front Street
Santa Cruz, CA 95060

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Sarah Kanouse, a media artist and educator, will be presenting a solo performance about her relation to the history of the electrical grid and fossil fuels.

“My Electric Genealogy” is a 60-minute, auto-ethnographic lecture-performance that weaves together live narration, choreographed movement, documentary video, and sound to address the climate justice ramifications of the electrical grid the artist’s grandfather helped to design and build. For nearly forty years, Ed Kanouse designed, planned, and supervised the spider-vein network of lines connecting Los Angeles to its distant sources of electric power.

Years later, the artist learned his legacy also included some of the most polluting fossil fuel infrastructure in the country—mostly located on Navajo land. Taking up Donna Haraway’s call to “make oddkin,” My Electric Genealogy proceeds from an imaginative re-reading of the artist’s family tree, refiguring as relations both the electrical infrastructure of Los Angeles and the desert ecologies, organisms, and human histories it connects. Weaving together episodes of the artist’s grandfather’s life, anxious fantasies about my child’s climate-challenged future, and stories of resistance and resilience from the front lines of centuries of extractivism, “My Electric Genealogy” is an essayistic, auto-ethnographic working-through of this personal and collective inheritance.

The artist’s performance is sponsored by the Environmental Art and Social Practice MFA program at UCSC and LANDING, a temporary art & event program in Santa Cruz, and hosted by the MAH.

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