Performance Art Works

-from the Body Psalms project

The Body Psalms Project is an ongoing project conceived by artist Tim Holmes to re-evaluate the body in American culture.  The Project is being used to engage communities celebration of the sanctity of the body based on filmed rituals in which people unfold passages of mystical texts painted on their skin.

Art creates a dynamic social alchemy designed to wrest the body as presented in mass media, from exploitation- by agents of advertising and porn- and re-infuse it with the sense of our original hallowed creation.

Body Psalms University Course


Body Psalms performance prep

Project Statement

 In Body Psalms words take on new dimensions of expression that appear in no other medium, becoming actual passages of sculpture as they move, stretch, unfold, recombine and morph into other words and images.  The form enriches powerful poetry with the expressive possibilities of choreography, calligraphy, sculpture and photography.  Words written along the body tumble, split and recombine; one word turned on its side becomes another, or changes meaning according to its juxtapositions against other words or with the gesture that unveils it.  Flesh becomes word and visa versa.


In a cultural atmosphere increasingly governed by the ethics of pornography, where nothing is too sacred to be exploited by amoral commercial forces, the body becomes the preferred currency.  Americans blithely stampede into ultimate capitalism, meanwhile embracing emerging technology in a heedless dive into the blue expanse of cyberspace– at the cost of abandoning our bodies– in favor of a brain-centered life. Is this what we are meant for?  What has happened to our incarnation?


Exploitive consumerism is a symptom of a disease with deep roots in all directions.  Religious tradition is as much to blame as the corporations that profit, as are each of us, who willingly bypass the spiritual gift of our incarnation to grasp at the easy, high-production pop image of the perfect body.  Cultural transformation is crucial if we are to avoid myriad catastrophes stemming from our failure to honor our own flesh.

Read reviews

See some of the films

"Being a Body in the USA"- Lecture

"Shikibu"s House" fan dance

"One", from Mirabai's Prayer

Copyright © 2007 Holmes Studio