Not There for the Money
While an explanation of his performance art from both last year and this year is cryptic at best, Dilworth is clear about how he differentiates himself from other artists involved.
"Basically they put up a whole bunch of pictures and they start selling things, and doing it as a gallery and they're not making a happening, you know," he said. "They're not making an experience. They're not doing something strange because inherently I know I really don't make any money from Nadaville because how can you? If you're trying to make an atmosphere and experience, you're trying to do something, you're not going to be able to really monetize it inherently."
His last Nadaville seems to have been a metaphor performance on the eviction crisis, while his current plan is going to be tied to being an artist.
"I'm going to have an application to become an artist because you know, a lot of people wonder how they can get into this art thing and this stuff," he said. "So we're gonna figure out how they can and they're going to have some applications and Jack Ryan (featured previously on Our Town Reno) is going to be the art commissar."
Dr. Dilworth features at the opening of the above video in a typewriting service performance back in 2014, for an event called NadaGras, and the soft opening of what was then the Morris Burner Hotel.
A Long History with NadaDada / NadaGras / Nadaville
"I've always liked doing performance art with typewriters. It is called spontaneous writing improv, improvisational writing because basically you give me a topic, I can write it. I'll write anything, a poem, advice, a mystery story, whatever," he said.
For many years, the NadaDada event took place in motel rooms, but Dilworth felt it was taking rooms away from residents who really needed them for shelter.
Looking at Reno from Further Afield
Even though he lives in Goldfield, Nevada, now, teaching (“everyone needs a day job and that's mine”), writing ("kind of the past, the present, the future of Goldfield, science fiction fantasy kind of horror stuff") and volunteering at a radio station, he comes back to Reno once or twice a month, and keeps close tabs on what's going on.
Evictions and gentrification? "You have to live somewhere unless you're dead. A lot of places on the West Coast, for years, they haven't kept up with building affordable housing and housing for people who are middle class, and now all they're mostly building is rich people's houses. And that's a shame, because they're pricing people out, especially here. The people who kept Reno going, kept it awkward, who created history in Reno, they are all being priced out," he said.
He predicts another bust after the current boom, just as bad as ten years ago. "Eventually only the rich people are going to be around. And how are they going to be able to do anything if no one can afford to live anywhere? It's basically a Bay Area situation, you know, people are sleeping in cars, people are sleeping under bridges and they're making, you know, supposedly a good wage."
Room for Optimism
"We have to figure out ways to make life sustainable because there are ways to live here and have everything for everyone. Why not? That's what I always ask. So I think this is possible and I know it's possible. We just have to get through this rough patch," he said.
He also says there is good coming out of the so-called Renossance for artists.
"The good stuff that has happened is that people are starting to respect and want art and want to do more with it," he said. "The Burning Man culture and a culture of art and creativity and radical self expression and creating temporary autonomous zones. I mean, that's what Nadaville is all about."
Writings, "Bob" Dobbs and Broken Links
From a section of his Non Creative Garbage web project called Haikus a la Kerouac (without the font or formatting): "Life without sunsets dismally trudging onward, where is the beauty? Visions of what was once the most beautiful thing, now sadness creeps in. Excuses abound when some people lack money, falling like snowflakes. Drop Forevermore Pallas's bust on the Chamber Door, get rid of the bird!"
Past websites he's worked on have broken links but he's not worried about that. "I do have a website I need to resurrect at some point, " he said. "But, you know, it's time I don't have, I don't have an army of assistants helping me. It's just me right now. So, you know, I have to, I have to kind of triage what I need to do."
Interview by Our Town Reno in June 2018