With This Masquerade, Narcissister assembles a dozen duplicates of herself. She and her sister-selves conceal their faces, using the mask as prophylactic against the hegemonic hetero-male gaze. The sisters emerge, wearing only wigs and merkins, crawling toward an upstage circus tent like robotic automatons and declaring jihad. Narcissister dances Alvin Ailey-inspired turns across the stage while shimmying in a fat suit, and births accessories that reflect our Capitalist fetishes back to ourselves. Narcissister’s stripteases, set to music by The Clash, Janet Jackson, and Nina Simone, reveal skin to be the ultimate covering over our desires and
Reconfiguring multiple feminisms, Narcissister’s power rests in her play with ambiguity. In ThisMasquerade, she is covered, she is nude; she is thin, she is chubby; she is black, she is white; she is Barbie, she is suicide bomber; she is Mammy, she is Marie Antoinette; she is bottom, she is top; she is punk, she is hip-hop; she is human, she is animal; she is body, she is mind. She asks us what it means to decapitate and devour our own heads — a question we can only answer with a curtsy.
- Ariel Osterweis, 2011
In 2010, Narcissister presented the first version of This Masquerade at The Kitchen, New York.