Mark I Chester photo of the day
Mark I Chester studio  1229 Folsom St./SF  415-621-6294 

June 17, 2011   


photo of the day 6/17/2011 - photo Mark I Chester

This is a bondage performance piece that I did with Peter Hartman in 1982 at 544 Natoma Performance Gallery, Peter was the director of 544 and it was SF's first openly gay performance space and art ga
llery.  We wanted to do something special for the one year anniversary of the Folsom St. Fire.  We couldn't figure out what to do when Peter said, "Well we know one thing you can't do.  You can't tie me to the piano while I play."  And that was it.  I tied Peter and his piano to the stage while he improvised on the piano.

Many special performers did shows at 544 Natoma including: Diamanda Galas, Whoppie Goldberg, The Blake St. Hawkeyes, Philip Demitri Galas, Ethyl Eichelberger and others.  The SF Jacks held their very first meeting on the stage of 544 while performance painter Lou Rudolph documented the event.. It was truly one of those SF spaces where art, sex and theater all came together (no pun intended, although the pun would be appropriate if intended). It was wild, undisciplined, art on the edge and it died in 1984 as the AIDS crisis grew by leaps and bounds, devouring everyone and everything in its path.