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Traitor Meme was a performance and installation at Castlefield Gallery, Manchester, in June 2017, as part of a two person show with the painter Lindsey Bull.

You can see images from the installation here.

This performance was the first iteration of Traitor Meme with subsequent performances (as part of Shonky: the Aesthetics of Awkwardness) in Belfast, Dundee and Bury, and then subsequently in London and Oxford.

You can read the Traitor Meme Speech here. You can listen to the Traitor Meme song here:

 

 

For this performance Plastique Fantastique were David Burrows, Alex Marzeta, Simon O’Sullivan and Vanessa Page.

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You thought that the frog, or the mouse, or steam boat willy, or the cross or the flag, or the crown or kanye west meltdown or stalin or the cat, kitten, dog puppy was the first! The first meme-tech-traveller. The first meme-tech-replicator.

The first meme was the grunt that became hello – hello, hello, hallo, hi, hello, hello.

The first meme was the second fire lit by a copycat. The first meme was the carved flint. The first meme was an imitation of a neighbour at the expense of the neighbour. The first meme was a joke, but serious with it. The first meme was the first idea that popped into your head, your name – ricky, ruth, ray, rob, rilke, rhianna – and with it a hundred other memes. You, I, we are the first and last meme.

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And like you, I, we, deep down, a meme has no scruples, replication – repetition – reiteration – is what we want. Replication and repetition and reiteration and replication and repetition and reiteration and replication and repetition and reiteration and replication and repetition and reiteration and replication and repetition and reiteration and replication and repetition and reiteration and so on and so on and so on and so on and so on and so on and so on and so on, etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. etc.

But there is one that does not seek and so on and so on, there is one that does not desire etc. etc. etc. that does not want more of the same…

The first Traitor Meme is the Hanging Man, the Major Arcane Number 16, the card of self-sacrifice, the world of upside down, wrong way round…

Traitors, Traitors, all up-and-down-side-inverts… you, I, we be traitors…

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Question 1. Traitor Meme, Traitor Meme, who are you?

Odin knows upside down…
Mappi Mundi knows upside down…
Fox-Owl knows upside down…
High Frequency Trading knows upside down…
Bit Coin knows knows upside down…

Question 2. Traitor Meme, Traitor Meme, what are you made off?

Spit and plastic, and not plastic.

Question 3. Traitor Meme, Traitor Meme, why betray?

Because you are your own worst enemy.

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