Love Art Laboratory
By Julia Bradshaw


Costume designer Katea Petro, bride Elizabeth Stephens, bride Annie Sprinkle, and corset designer, Ms. Antoinette conspire to design the green theme nuptials.

Collaborators, lovers and multiple-married couple Elizabeth Stephens and Annie Sprinkle invited all to join in their wedding preparations in the new ICA print studio on Saturday 5th April. With the bride encouraging wedding-veil decorations of a pair of lovebirds, a green cocktail umbrella, peacock feathers, a hand-painted shell and multiple green beads – a no-holds-barred involvement in creating wedding clothes developed. Participants in the sewing-bee created a wedding-staff and leather waistcoat decorated with buttons, beads, feathers and shiny, green bric-a-brac for Bride Elizabeth Stephens. Others attached beads, abalone shells and hand-made paper beads by Carmela Rizzuto to Bride Annie Sprinkle’s wedding skirt. And Sprinkle modeled a magnificently constructed green corset created by Ms. Antoinette as she read poetry to the people in the gallery and spoke of her own love story. A feast of Green Food kept the energy levels up. As Elizabeth Stephens said “we couldn’t do this without the participation of the people who came today. Everyone has contributed to make this a fun, beautiful and sexy event.



Friends and admirers help create adornments for Annie Sprinkle and Elizabeth Stephens wedding in Santa Cruz.

This is a seriously fun art project. And a seriously fun commitment to life, love and being engaged in the political. For the Love Art Laboratory project, the couple have committed to marrying each other seven times over a seven-year period. This year, both will be wearing green wedding creations – the selected fourth color for their fourth wedding. In the SJICA gallery the gowns and memorabilia of the preceding three weddings are on display: Red, Orange and Gold. Each year, the couple writes wedding vows including statements of love, passion and politics. Stephens said “this year we will make our vows to the earth”. This honoring of the earth, love and the commitment of a same-gender couple unable to marry legally in this country is at once a celebration and a political statement. As they write on their website: “The Love Art Laboratory grew out of our response to the violence of war, the anti-gay marriage movement, and our prevailing culture of cynicism.”

This project honors the endurance art practices of Linda Montana and her 7 years of living art project, where she wore outfits of a single colour for a 7 year period. Linda Montana will be at the ICA May 6 – May 9 when she performs Re-Seeing: Being Blindfolded in California; 7 hours/ 4 days.

Sprinkle’s and Stephen’s fourth wedding will take place in Santa Cruz on May 17th as part of the Intervene! Interrupt! Rethinking Art as Social Practice conference at UC Santa Cruz in May 2008. All guests will be wearing green.

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