hole(W)hole. 2017

This work is the by-product of a 5-part performance piece. The first part, titled hole, comprised of an 8 hour durational piece, whereby I dug myself into a hole, with a bronze casting of my left hand, welded onto the end of a spade handle. I called this object the digging stick.

A microphone hung above the hole to amplify the sound of the digging stick impacting the earth. A sound piece accompanied the atmosphere. A high quality recording of a singing bowl filled with water looped in the background for the 8-hour duration.

The second part entailed filling the hole with a body of water. This symbolic cleansing ritual allowed the water to become the performer. It took two days for the water to seep back into the earth.

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Thirdly, the hole was transformed into a fire pit. These ‘elemental’ performances became part of the groundwork to prep the surface of the hole for the fourth performance piece.

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The (w)hole performance.  8 wheelbarrow loads of cement and river sand were mixed and poured into the hole.

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The final performance, a position of mechanical advantage, entailed rigging a pulley system to the cured cement sculpture, with a mechanical advantage ratio of 25:1. This system enabled me to haul out the cast structure on my own.

The tangible work, hanging in the poplar forest, is seen as a durational, living performance piece in constant dialogue with its surroundings, the elements and the people it encounters at different times in this specific space.

BIOGRAPHY OF A HOLE DIGGER
BY LUCY JANE TURPIN