How far are we willing to go to test out our endurance in terms of patience and experience? The bold endeavor undertaken by a duo of performance artists (Alex Schweder and Ward Shelley), asks us such deep questions, albeit with a lighthearted side to the whole affair.
So what did their eccentric yet tough endeavor entail? Well, the pair had successfully spent ten consecutive days inside a giant hamster wheel, installed at The Boiler exhibition center in Brooklyn. The live performance is christened as the ‘In Orbit’, and its purpose is to ‘showcase’ how we co-exist and react with our surroundings, especially in our confined state.
The hamster wheel is furnished with all the simple amenities one would require on a daily basis, including a bathroom, kitchen and seating areas. However, according to the participants, things were a bit uneasy on account of the rotating nature of the wheel. There was also the predicament of privacy, with most on-board compartments only comprising of curtains to shield the occupants from the more ‘curious’ onlookers.
But as for the live performance, it was a resounding success, with seamless interaction being made possible with the more mature gallery goers. Some of the audience members even brought coffee to the participants when they were thirsty. As Alex Schweder says (in an interview with Time Out) –
There’s that moment of empathy when you see someone else doing this thing, and you’re kind of captivated, because you imagine yourself doing it. Having live bodies in a work makes people linger a little bit more.
For those who are interested – the live show will still go till 5th of April (though not on consecutive days basis). For more details, please have a gander at their Press Release.