Becoming Human/Artist: Humans Moving in Accord with the Change that Makes the World

Elizabeth Ellsworth, Jamie Kruse


In the spring of 2007 we staged an ecological performance piece throughout the American Southwest entitled 28 days. As an art collaboration of two, based in Brooklyn, NY, we had been engaged in a series of projects that responded to forces (tides, wind, light, time) that compose urban landscapes and human environments. We had used media such as photography and video, and signaling devices such as orange flagging tape, to make these forces visible and palpable. We had been contextualizing our work within ideas associated with relational aesthetics.

We felt the urgency to draw connections among natural and social/cultural forces that extend across great distances and shape vastly different landscapes and built environments. We invented 28 days as a way to expose our bodies and imaginations directly to sites and moments at which natural and constructed spheres of intensity come vividly and critically into play. We would pause at each apex to feel the reality of relation. We would make and create responsively there, with the intention to move accordingly with the change that makes the world. Our series of interconnected gestures of response became the ecological performance of 28 days.

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