Portfolio > Tramp Project: Production with Models

Production with Models was an installation in the Haripin Art Center where I built the city of Chicago, a scenic farm, and a suburb. These objects were fictitiously blown up at the closing to create a video of a super atomic bomb being detonated. The public was invited to help create this scene, by helping to shoot a stop-animation of the city on fire. The footage will be used as a part of the Tramp Project. These images show the installation and link to the stop-animation that was created collaboratively with 20 participants.

The Tramp Project is a performance for film project based on James Agee’s script, The Tramp’s New World, originally written for Charlie Chaplin’s Tramp character. Throughout the Tramp Project, I am generating a set that is a platform for a series of performances. The result of those performances will be a fully edited feature and cinema experience, a series of objects and sets, and a series of production stills, all of which can be interchanged in various exhibitions and screenings that continue to loop from performance to documentation and back to performance again. In essence, the performance is the shooting of the film, the film is the documentation of the performance that is screened to an audience while an experimental band plays a live score, the live score is then edited into the film, which is then rescreened to a new audience….

The narrative: a super-atomic bomb is dropped, leaving seemingly just one survivor, the Tramp. As the picture unfolds, it is clear that others have survived and are coalescing around two separate and completely different communities. The first is the Tramp’s community, which has embraced the parameters that the new world has created by rebuilding a community by hand. The second community is made up of the scientists who actually created the bomb and were safe from the blast in their underground bunker. The scientists attempt to restore their technology and mechanized existence. For a majority of the film, the two communities are unaware of the other. Upon learning of the existence of each other, the Tramp’s community (but not the Tramp) is lured to the scientists’ way of life by the ease of technology. In the end, the Tramp, alone, walks from this new world into the sunset. This screenplay provides the opportunity to reenvision Chaplin’s classic character as female.