Raine Raine is the new featured artist for Art Rise Savannah, which will present the exhibit "UN/LEARNING" at its DeSoto Avenue space from Jan. 1-9.
Raine is a complex soul searching for an enlightenment and transformation so unique that it might take years to process. In the new exhibit, Raine embarks on the binging and purging of behaviors, ideas and mentalities that were adopted throughout life and during the developmental years.
It is easy to question your existence and reality when you lose a parent at a young age, Raine said, missing that guidance as you navigate childhood and develop into an inquisitive adult.
"UN/LEARNING" could possibly be the most ambitious interactive performance art exhibit thus far in our area. It will involve the residency of the artist at the gallery for nine days while streaming the activities live online.
Raine's daily tasks will become explorations as the artist tries to solve many self-awareness questions. The exhibit will also incorporate collaborations with other local performers and visual artists, who will drop by to infuse the space with the energy needed to move forward. Past co-workers from places like Vinnie Van Go-Go's will be on hand to help feed the artist. Installations will be built and projections will be shown. There will even be musical performances by Trophy Wives and Ross Fish throughout the nine-day event.
I asked straight and to the point: What are you trying to unlearn?
Raine answered with a deep sigh.
"Trying to unlearn the thoughts and ideas that were implanted by everyone, from family members to peers.
"To be able to form an objective perspective of my privileges as a white female, with an able body. For me to be able to get into my head. I have to understand there is larger concept and I am also looking at my queerness and the relationship to my body and how my thoughts are influenced by viewing myself as gay.
"I will pretend to do a surgery to bridge a gap on things that I would like to see and imagine myself being. I wish to have been born a man so I could change my gender back to a woman. I think gender isn't beneficial to the pursuit of human race. Gender has limited our capacity of seeing ourselves. Gender is the way we have been prescribed," Raine said.
"I wish we would be some sort of alien-type creature that could communicate psychically. I believe that body image limits us from doing things that could get us much further. I am searching for oneness - the way to achieve it is if we shed all shells and preconceptions."
Raine will be "sleeping" in a cocoon/womb made by Kimberly English, a fibers art major from Savannah College of Art and Design. Raine says the process is more about letting the subconscious rest than about actual sleep. The cultivation of this binging/purging experience will occur during the closing event Jan. 9, where Raine will emerge from the self-built womb "after three hours of rumination and subconscious self-actualization followed by the final un/learning task, the cutting of all ties to the created work."
In the early '90s, as I was studying nature and holistic practices, I came across certain studies such as past life regression, attunement and rebirthing therapy. The rebirthing process was one that promised the practitioner exactly that, the opportunity to heal and start all over again, with a very symbolic ceremony of the emergence into this world, all brand-new and free of past traumas.
Raine will be live-streaming "UN/LEARNING" 24/7 at www.raineblunk.com as a part of a larger social media campaign in congruence with the live events. The Facebook event page will also list the full schedule for the nine-day performance.
Adriana Iris Boatwright is a photographer and lifestyle blogger residing in Savannah. She's in love with the oaks, the arts and the people in the city. Learn more at adrianairis.com.