Gregory Cohen Frumin, 26
Union Square Greenmarket
Fri Jul 11 2008
Gregory Cohen Frumin
Photograph by Jay Muhlin
Did I just see you trading with another Greenmarket guy? Yes, I exchanged apples for beets.
Have you ever bartered your way up to something more valuable, like a crate of apples for a new bicycle? [Laughs] Um, no. They're not really my apples per se, so I can't just go willy-nilly.
Are you a full-time apple man? No, I'm a performer. Right now I'm doing some great performance research with a collaborator—like, research in the form of performance.
Okay...I'm picturing historical reenactments. Well, I'm trying to reproduce a choreography that I created during improvisation.
Is it mostly movement-based? There's text, too, which comes from a spam e-mail.
About penis enlargement? No. I can't tell you what it is, but it's one of those...pleading letters.
Oh! Nigerian scam artists! Yeah. And there's dance theater and silent acting. I suppose you could call it mime. I also participate regularly in Draw-a-thon Theater.
Do you pose? Yes. I call it performance-art-modeling: Imagine performance art and art modeling, if you smashed 'em up and mixed 'em in a bowl.
In the buff? Often. It's been a really great experience. I can do my weird-ass performance art and get paid for it.
What do you say to people who are perplexed by what you do? You don't say, you show. A picture is worth a thousand words and a performance is worth a million.
More thoughts from Gregory
"Beardsmanship is only a matter of willpower. I saw this bearded lady the other day and I was like, Daaamn, think about the willpower it's gotta take for her to grow that beard!"
"I was at Cha Cha's House of Ill Repute and there was a banjo player singing a song about busking and how it's like prostitution. I shouted out, 'That's why they call it the world's second-oldest profession!' and someone added, 'I thought that was politics!'"
"There's so much waste in this country, it's horrifying. There's this great Far Side cartoon with a Native American elder sitting in a circle of youngsters. He'saying, 'This is the only part of the buffalo we do not use,' and he's holding up this weird fallopian tube sort of plumbing I-don't-know-what. At the market, we make use of the waste: All the apples that are soft at the end of the day we press into cider or put into pies."