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performance

A. K. Burns and A. L. Steiner’s Community Action Center

The little cretin shepardess was now ruined for normal love and she ran amok among the other freaks, inflaming them.

—Jack Smith, “Normal Love,” 1963

SOME FEMININE PRODUCTS: Makeup, paint, and brushes. Floggers and Boston creams. Joints. Bananas that bleed when stabbed. Bloody pinkies poked through magazine pages and punctured beer cans held in taut tighty-whiteys. Watermelons split by samurai swords. Adult babies sprung from clay wombs.

FEMININE PRODUCTS says the sign, hoisted atop a stretched canvas above a slew of art supplies. It is both the literal and the conceptual establishing shot for A. K. Burns and A. L. Steiner’s sixty-nine-minute “sociosexual video” Community Action Center, 2010, which premiered in June at Taxter & Spengemann’s booth at Liste 15 in Basel. What follows is indeed a “feminine product,” but it is also a feminist evacuation of the term. The sign is a joke, but

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