Performance Artist Gives Birth to Baby in NYC Art Gallery

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Marni Kotak/Microscope Gallery

Only in New York.

Performance artist Marni Kotak delivered (literally) her most personal work of art yet on Tuesday: a baby boy. Kotak, 36, gave birth in front of an open audience at the Microscope Gallery in Brooklyn, an act she calls the “highest form of art.”

Baby Ajax was born at 10:17 a.m. New York time, weighing in at 9 pounds, 2 ounces, and 21 inches long, the Associated Press reports. Before Tuesday, he was known as “Baby X,” the unborn star of Kotak’s “The Birth of Baby X” piece which began its run Oct. 8th. Kotak met with visitors at the gallery to discuss motherhood and art, and collected contact information for those interested in being informed when she went into labor, so they could rush over to be a part of the very personal piece.

(READ: Brooklyn Artist to Give Birth in Public, as Performance Art)

Kotak transformed the gallery into a home-birth center, painting the walls a calming blue color, decorating the walls with photos of babies, and even put up a 10-foot trophy to honor her baby’s birth.

She expected about 15 people to attend the birth, but the gallery hasn’t released official numbers. The Village Voice’s Araceli Cruz was in attendance, though she arrived just after the baby was born, and reports that following the birth Kotak was “calmly eating a banana, the placenta in a bowl,” while the baby’s father, Jason, held his new son in a blue towel. A camera and video hovering above captured the baby’s first peaceful moments of life.

For anyone who missed the event, the exhibition runs through November 7 and will feature a video of the whole ordeal, along with “remnants” from the birth. For Kotak, it seems her performance is just beginning, as she appears to view Ajax’s entire upbringing to be an art project in itself. Her next project is called “Raising Baby X” and, as she outlines on her website, will be a long-term undertaking in which she’ll write and publish an “anthology of memoirs” of her experiences with motherhood, encompassing Ajax’s life “from birth through attending college and developing an independent life.”

Of course, we can’t help but imagine that at some point her subject might rebel, being under a microscope his whole life and everything.  NewsFeed will be eagerly awaiting the release of “Raising Baby X: The Angsty Teen Years” in 2026.

MORE: American Women: Birthing Babies at Home

3 comments
formerlyjames
formerlyjames

Reorganization might be good.  But this suggestion is idiocy. 

roknsteve
roknsteve

A better idea is we tear it down and stay out of the war business.  And good riddance.  

Eros
Eros

Well.. its not a bad question. For humans its good for them to explore such a set like {X|X is a partitioning of military resources}. But the size of such a set |X| is inhumanly large.. trillions of possible alternatives. So the presenters should get cookies for looking at a partitioning of resources in one different way. Calculating |X|, the size of X, is difficult. To simplify this assume a very very small subset, where the military has 4 million qualified employees and wants to choose 1 million for a partitioning on the set for a branch, 4m C 1m = 4000000!/[(1000000)!(300000)!]   Yeah.. mighty google can't even do this. lol.  Very large number, but |X| Is going to be much much bigger than that. Do you go with 8 branches or 6 branches.. or 10  or 300.. All the pentagon computers where quantum computers running at full speed they still would never check the cause and effect of each choice. And that is before adding management styles, leadership styles, and more and more choices that are relevant to a Pentagon like human resource structure.

Humans are horrible at cause and effect anyways. They see money spent on a gas eating tank as useless, but it does keep human capital around for future hollistic needs. You save money here and now, and loose human capital.. they ain't going to switch back to defense work willy nilly. But then the humans who complain about money go and spend a lot of money for a real diamond, when synthetic diamonds can be made just as good.. only some nerd with a eye piece and training can tell the difference. Without that nerd, no one would know the difference.. but Humans kill each other and tear up the earth because of the idea that someone might say 'well its not the real deal.' Its amusing.

So anyways now the Pentagon has the 1 way they do things and the 1 alternative partition presented. Centillion more to go through and most of them are junk.  lol. Its best they stick with the winning formula that evolved and is battle tested. If swords did not rust and guns did not jam, pentagon would not have evolved excessive cleanliness. But in that Centillion of ways to do thing, there will be some that are by far superior then the way the Pentagon does things. And humans will never be able to figure them out. They may require things impossible for humans to perceive.

All that is needed is they do the best they can each day  and they continue to invest in humans. The meme of sacrifice is battle tested. Armed forces day is to honor and promote a trait that leads to success while also being nationally festive.