Performing Restraint is based on the idea of constraints, ownership, artistic ego, and labor.
It is an 8-hour performance mimicking the structure of a typical 9a-5p job located in a generic construction site/office space. We wear the same outfit making us into one unit. We have a specific task every hour (creating marks on the wall, trading places, removing previous marks, etc.), while tied to each other (every hour the rope is shortened). We are not aloud to speak. Communication is only through physical interactions and altercations.
The idea is to create a micro-system where each of us is continuously working a laborious routine, without knowing the final outcome. At the same time, We do not have final authorship or specificity—each of our marks are layered on top of one another, with no one’s hand taking priority. Viewers are allowed to enter the space and interact. At the end of the performance we leave the space exactly how it is. What is left is the residue of the performance, the mark of our actions, and the visual product of our labor.
8-hour endurance performance
Photo credit: AM DeBrincat
Video credit: Claire Robertson
With Michael Watson