A roving street series about the true costs of war. Engaging with random spectators on city sidewalks, in public parks, along parade marches and on military bases, this silent pantomime is performed without polemical bombast, sharing the simple message: peace is possible, we just have to choose it.
Inspired by circus “tramp” clowns Otto Griebling & Emmett Kelly as well as WWII cartoonist Bill Mauldin, who realistically portrayed the gritty reality of infantrymen, LWT artistic director, Kevin Augustine embodies the Hobo Grunt— part tattered clown, part homeless veteran. This portrayal is also influenced by Buddhist principles of having compassion for all suffering beings as well as the suicide of Augustine's father—a Marine who took his own life when Kevin was 11 years old.
Augustine embodies a true practice pointed sharply toward an awakening to the real cost of war, and for this I bow to him.
CLARION CALL is a meditative counter-recruitment to the heroic vision of war sold by the military to every new generation of combat soldiers. By symbolizing psychological trauma and subverting military iconography—particularly the practice of bayonet training (designed to eradicate the reluctance of human beings to kill each other)—LWT's mission is to assist in the consciousness raising that might one day help break our cycle of violence.
Peace is possible. In our hearts and in the world.
Vietnam veteran turned Zen Buddhist monk,
Claude AnShin Thomas- author of "At Hell's Gate"