Marni Kotak, the performance artist who gave birth to her baby Ajax in an art gallery in front of an audience, is continuing with her project, Raising Ajax — vlogging all the details of her child-rearing an d”re-contextualizing the everyday act of raising a child” as performance art — and this time, she steps it up a notch from the creepy deadpan banality. She had baby Ajax tattooed with “Ajax.” Allegedly. Ok, let’s play along.
In the video, Kotak announces that Ajax (the cleaner) and its corporate daddy Colgate-Palmolive is sponsoring Ajax (the baby) with $13,000 a year in exchange for being tattooed. I know, if it were real, child protective services and Colgate-Palmolive’s lawyers would racing to her door. I said, play along.
Hyperallergic’s Hrag Vartanian reminds that this isn’t the first time a baby was “tattooed,” but this one feels like it could be “real.” True, in this vlogging medium, and the project consistency since before Ajax’s birth, it does feel like this preposterous act had actually happened as banally as birth, feedings, playtime and all those other events Kotak has been promising to show in exchange of sponsorship. Even though this is still too similar to the Truman Show to be a rare and unique piece of art, it’s actually a bit embarrassing to have taken her plea for corporate sponsorship at face value when it was tongue in cheek.
Wait, she wants us to play along. Marni Kotak, you monster!