Written by Michele Smith, Nina Gilmour, Danya Buonastella, Marissa Zinni and Dean Gilmour
The genesis of the project grew from our exploration of Bouffon: those outcasts who come to the theatre to denounce and expose the greedy hypocrites, the assholes, who control the world. We asked ourselves the question: Who are the assholes? For the past few years, Oxfam, the British anti-poverty organization, has released a series of reports with increasingly dire statements about wealth inequality. This year, it’s back with a new straight-to-the-headlines statistic: The top 1% will control more wealth than the remaining 99% by 2016.
Who are the culprits and why do they continue to get away with their despicable greed. Parallel to our exploration of Bouffon, is our work that is inspired by Hieronymus Bosch’s painting “The Garden of Earthly Delights. Art historians are divided as to whether the triptych’s central panel is a moral warning on the perils of life’s temptations or a panorama of paradise lost. American writer Peter S. Beagle describes it as an “erotic derangement, a place filled with the intoxicating air of perfect liberty. There is something very mysterious and human about this painting that acts as a counterpoint to our research of the assholes of the world.
THE ASSHOLES is a denunciation of the hypocrisy that underpins the extraordinary prediction that Oxfam has made.
“The Buffons are those whom the “pure of heart” have shown the way to the ghettos. The Bouffons might be the deformed, the handicapped, the mad, a prostitute, a witch, etc. These same “pure of heart” at times made the Bouffons parade through the village streets so that their ugliness and deformity could chase away the plague or cholera. Gargoyles were given the same job: to repel successive attacks that the devil planned against the churches. The bouffon parodies those bastards who have always pointed out the way to the concentration camps, and who will always do so. The buffon and all the outcasts have twigged, before the others, that boundless freedoms lie hidden in writings, mathematics, astronomy, music; in the arts.” Philippe Gaulier. 2010.
MICHELE SMITH, Director/Collaborator
DEAN GILMOUR, Actor/Collaborator
NINA GILMOUR, Actor/Collaborator
DANYA BUONASTELLA, Actor/Collaborator
MARISSA ZINNI, Actor/Collaborator