230 Steps in 24 hours - Raegan Truax

Raegan Truax ( United States )

For her first work while in residence at ZK/U, Truax created a site-specific durational piece utilizing a wall resting at ZK/U’s perimeter. Titling the piece 230 Steps in 24 hours, Truax attempted to take 24 hours to walk on top of a single stretch of wall in one direction; a walk that would normally take her only five minutes to complete. She began the piece at 3am on August 13, 2012 and performed in silence, without sitting down, taking breaks, or eating. Interested in how observers would interact with the work, she also left several elements up to chance, such as how to cross a large gap in the wall without having to come down, not carrying water with her, and shedding layers of clothing she would ultimately need but not be able to walk backward to retrieve as night became day and night again.

Following 230 Steps, Truax began thinking about the failure of language and visual documentation to communicate the experiences of her body, time, and space during 230 Steps. In response to this, she spent the next few weeks creating a choreographic score tentatively titled how high/how wide, which reflects the two questions Truax found everyone asked her after the durational work: “how wide was the wall?” and “how high was the wall?” Having never taken formal measurements of either of these things, Truax realized to answer she stood in front of people, placed her feet the width of the wall and said, “I can’t tell you the measurement, but my feet know.” Exploring movement that could communicate both her bodily experience on the wall as well as her desire to invite people into her work and their own bodies how high/how wide attempts to rupture and play with interiority and exteriority, object association, memory and affect. It is a unique performance that places its spectator inside of the work, making the small gestures and awkward gyrations of our everyday bodily movements hypervisible while also exploring how all bodies inside the work, regulated and engaged by Truax’s movement, begin to form an original and intimate dance together.