Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Destroyer: Performance art for the Grinch in all of us

Posted By on Thu, Dec 10, 2009 at 11:32 AM

Santa Smash
  • Santa Smash
Let's face it, even when the economy is healthy the most cheerful holiday revelers can feel a bit harried this time of year. Between the hangovers, the extra work both at home and at the office, and the inability to shop without being subjected to "Grandma Got Run Over by a Reindeer," it's not difficult to understand why even the merriest among us might want to throttle an elf. That's what makes artist Gadsby Creson's planned performance so genius. On Saturday, December 12 at 3:00 p.m. anybody who feels like they just can't take it anymore is invited to gather in the parking lot behind the P&H Cafe to break things. That's right, to break things. All kinds of things.

Intrigued by Creson's performance art Intermission Impossible asked if she'd like to play three questions. Here's what she had to say...

Intermission Impossible: Why do the holidays make you so tense?

Gadsby Creson:
X-mas is stressful & expensive:

•"The average American spends $800 on gifts over the holiday season (posted on"

•"As Black Friday nears and national unemployment levels push into double digits for the first time in decades, the American Psychological Association’s (APA) newest Stress in America survey finds that Americans continue to cite financial concerns as leading sources of stress."

• "Approximately seven in ten Americans report that money is a significant source of stress."( posted by the American Psychological Association)

• X-mas is especially wasteful & we don't need more stuff:

•"Between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, Americans generate 25% more waste per week than during the rest of the year. This creates an additional 1.2 million tons per week, or an extra 6 million tons, for the holiday season."

•"If every American family reduced holiday gasoline • consumption by just one gallon a week, the result would be an annual reduction in greenhouse gas production of 13 billion pounds (6.5 million tons) of carbon dioxide."

•"If American households reduced their holiday ribbon • usage by just 2 feet, the result would be a savings of 50,000 miles, enough ribbon to circle the Earth twice."

•"Extra waste is generated between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day: 6 million tons. "
(posted on Use- Less-

Intermission Impossible: Wow, that is a pretty thorough answer. So, why do you think destroying things is such a great way to relieve stress?

Gadsby Creson: It is really fun & cathartic to break things! As a southern woman who usually spends a significant amount of the season planning for and executing festive gatherings, feasts, & purchasing gifts, I have always enjoyed blowing off some steam and repressed anger by breaking things. After all this creating of holiday cheer, an opposite act of destruction really balances out my mood. I kinda think of myself as Shiva, the Indian god that is the creator of everything and the destroyer of everything (good to mention Hindu gods in a Christmas piece).

Intermission Impossible: Do you think destroying some things relieves more stress than other things? If so, can you maybe provide some examples? Like why smashing a vase might be more stress relieving than smashing a light bulb.

Gadsby Creson: As in most things, especially from the view point of an American consumer, bigger is always better, louder and the weight of a vase really allows you to put your arm into it.

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