I’m sat with Maggie Schroeder A.K.A Indyana Gones, a performance artist and QM grad. In April she performed a piece on ‘Blurred Lines,’ reinventing the song to be about people’s relationship with food rather than sex. In it, Indy rubs food over herself while singing her new lyrics, asking people to reconsider the relationship they have with their own bodies.
G: Tell me about yourself.
M: I’m an independent producer & stage manager. At high school I worshipped the work of Marina Abromovic and at university I started working with Lois Weaver. Her assignments pushed me towards my own persona: Indyana Gones. I started producing Indy outside of university and professionally, which got me where I am today.
I: I grew up and knew the second I came squirting out of mum’s vag that I was gonna be super famous. I became a super famous 19th century opera singer. On Janurary 1st 1900, the 19th century ended and I didn’t know what to do. I met Tammy Whynot and she showed me the world of performance art. I’m happier doing performance art because during my opera times they tried to tell me how to look, act and what to eat. So I gave them the finger and here I am.
G: So your piece is a reinvention of ‘Blurred Lines,’ but food is a substitute for sex. How did you come up with the link between sex & food?
M: The song came first. I was sitting in airport, hungry, with the song stuck in head. I felt that ‘Blurred Lines’ came under more fire than it deserved, but the reason it did was because of sexuality and the ideas surrounding it about pressuring women into sex. No-one should ever feel pressure to have sex. The thing is, everyone’s been in situations where they want something they can’t have, so as soon as I started putting food in context of sexuality it made a lot more sense (e.g. you’re on a diet but you really want cake). Both sex and food bring people together: they are intimately involved with the body and both involve things going inside you. You don’t have to be sexually aroused by food to understand that. You have to own your relationship with your body; you might feel shitty from a one-night stand and shitty after you eat a piece of cake because that’s how you’re ‘supposed’ to feel. You shouldn’t be slut- or carb-shamed, but you have to practice safe sex and a healthy lifestyle. Indy is so focused on the body because she wants people to enjoy the one they’re in.
I: Robin Dicke is one of my closest friends. He wrote a song called Blurred Lines. I was like, “Robby, what you’re talking about is your relationship with food, not sex.” I wrote my new version and he was like, “You have to perform this song.” That’s how it started. I think people need to be comfortable, sexy, confident and beautiful, no matter what it is they’re doing. They shouldn’t concentrate on how society makes them feel. My super famous friends starve themselves and to the gym for more hours than they spend at home. Negativity was clouding up my aura. People need an appreciative relationship with their body and shouldn’t feel bad about choccy cake and one night stands. I did the performance for all the little people, because we’re all sexy and we all deserve to feel that way.
M: Having lived in UK for 3 years and only visiting the U.S. every six months, I really started to see the differences between people in the USA and the UK. I found that many people see Americans as really friendly, loud, gluttonous and unfit. I love being loud but I don’t feel free to do that when I’m not in America. I made Indy the most extreme American stereotype. She came about as result of the conflict I found between American culture and stereotypes and how I really am. Indy is my outlet into being confident and loud. She’s got a pot belly, is overconfident and thinks she’s the sexiest thing in world, but she’s unafraid and it’s admirable.
G: Who’s the sexiest person in the world? What food would they be?
I: Taylor Launtner. Taytay Launtz. If he were food he’d be the BIGGEST, thickest (you know how important thickest is) steak, covered in fat but not the greasy kind, salsa sauce on the side and covered in sauce. So you have to lick your fingers after you eat it. For dessert I would have a Ryan Reynolds and he would be a triple-tiered chocolate cake which would look like a wedding cake. With ice-cream drizzled in raspberry sauce. He’s so sexy. The menu would describe the whole thing as succulent.
M: My boyfriend.
I: Yeah her boyf is pretty sexy.
M: He would be lobster macaroni cheese with little pieces of bacon. Because he’s CHEESY. Nah, because he’s comfort food and lobster makes it fancy and something different and bacon is the little orgasmic surprises. Dessert would be a banana split but we all know why that is.
G: Ladies, it’s been a pleasure.
Follow Indy on twitter @indygones