Aleksandra Mir

Aleksandra Mir is a Joshua Tree

and HDTS has questions
High Desert Test Sites Spring Event, Catalogue, Joshua Tree, 2003
By Lisa Anne Auerbach

1. What possessed you to want to become a Joshua Tree?

Aleksandra Mir: Impulse. I had been watching them for a couple of days and when it was time to leave the park, I passed by this dumpster / shooting range and it was kind of last chance to salute them. I don't think any other Joshua Trees could see me though, which now when I think of it maybe is a little bit sheepish. Of course it is best to be a Joshua Tree among other Joshua Trees.

2. And, while at work in your transformation, ever really feel like you actually were a tree?


Yes. We humans can identify with Joshua Tree so well because they are relatively similar in size, stand up straight and no two are alike. I don't think Joshua Trees are very smart though. They know what to do because their bodies tell them from the beginning. If a Joshua Tree was smart, it would run away and go and live in New York for a change. 

But they are beautiful, I think, because they stay and adapt to the environment in a very dignified way. Permanently rooted as they are in one spot for their whole lives, they get to express their individuality and desires by sprouting all these wacky branches, extrusions, arms and legs in endless variations instead.

3. what kind of posture made this transformation the most natural for you?


All the stretches were natural. Pride and simplicity.

4. Do you have any advice to give to others who may be interested themselves in being trees?


Anyone can do it. You know the song, "Got my arms, got my legs, got my brains, got my liver". It's like that. Start with the basics. For credibility, I usually throw in a little tradition, Balinesian Monkey Dance, American Indian Eagle Dance, Marcel Marceau and Smithson. But for the choreography itself, it really takes looking very hard at a tree so to ultimately become one. Physical movement circumvents drawing that way.

5. While you were a tree, what did you miss the most about being Aleksandra?


Nothing much at all. I was very happy being a Joshua Tree, if only for three minutes and it was sad it had to end.