45-minute live performance with recorded audio
In June 2009, the Weatherspoon Art Museum presented a show called "Our Subject is You" that focused on participatory art. All the works required the involvement of the public to be realized.
We Are Proud to Present was a live performance that took place during the opening of the show. The reception was held in the museum's courtyard. As guests arrived, they were polled for bits of information about themselves. This information was then given to a well-known local sportscaster, Mike Hogewood, who performed an extemporanous introduction while I cued up the type of music typically played at sports events to excite the crowd. We were both out of view, working from behind a curtain in the courtyard.
Local residents of the Greensboro area immediately recognized Mike's voice (famous for both his expert play-by-play announcing of baseball, basketball and football, but also for being the voice in a well-known local car commercial) and experienced an immediate, uncanny thrill at hearing their own names and personal details announced by Hogewood's booming, energized, disembodied, large-than-life voice.
The title of the piece riffed on the language of the typical press release phrase "We are proud to present [name of exhibition or name of artist]" but instead made individual viewers the primary point of focus. The piece also blurred the social rituals of the art opening ritual with that of the sporting event, two spectacles that generally cater to different publics on very different scales, with different expectations about social conduct.