Photo and audio documentation of the performance On a Text by James Baldwin (2013) by Becky Grajeda.


On a Text by James Baldwin is a performance which uses the repeated reading aloud,  audio recording, transcription, and whiting-out of an excerpt of James Baldwin's "Down at the Cross: Letter from a Region in My Mind" (1962). The process of repeated reading aloud, audio recording the reading, and transcription of the words read reduces the approximately 500 word text at the start of the performance to seven words by the end.  

Below are four audio recordings:  the first, seventh, thirteenth, and twenty-first (and last) readings of the text. Please use the scroll bar at the bottom and to the right of the listed tracks to scroll through the tracks. 


Performers: Becky Grajeda and Jessica Speer 

Photographers: Jorge Espinosa and Pete Bialecki

Audio recording and editing: Becky Grajeda

Photograph and audio documentation were created in January 2014 in part with a grant from the City of Chicago, Illinois' Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events.