A walk between two people in four parts over the course of one day.
A combination of the texts and photographs of Blake Morris and Andrew Howe.
A walk authored together.
Chimney Obscures Plane
DSB – Waiting Turns
A dog down by the river bank scrabbles in fallen leaves
Leaving a deposit for its two owners to find
Market men sort fruit
Pensioners arrange bags
Sweeping smoothly along the wide pathway from my right
Intermittently appearing/disappearing behind trees
The buzz of a leaf blower
Like an aggravating gnat
Pedestrian beeps signal crossing
The dog walkers pass in front of me, a man and woman
They lift the lid of the dog bin
Noticing me noticing
The danger of Watching.
Tethered (Running for the Bus – Caution Truck Turning Left)
People stopped on phones, waiting
Concrete columns loom above
Figures silhouetted between railings move quickly towards the town
A young woman walks in the opposite direction
Engrossed in a conversation on her mobile phone
Pedestrian time passed
Two loud bangs from a site further to the north
Telephone Conversation 1:
Like a performance score, a walk is an open-ended phenomenon, no one knows in advance what will present itself or who you might meet. The meaning is in the doing, properly performative then, which is to say, self-generating, contingent, improvisatory, light-footed and rooted in the everyday. It is also unexpected.
Carl Lavery, ‘Interruption… Walking and Ruination – or what it means to keep a secret’, in Clare Qualmann and Claire Hind Ways to Wander (Axminster: Triarchy Press, 2015).
ii. between things
Walking towards a tree I was imagining but not yet visualising | Searching for something inconsequential
Under my gaze and in a blink, ephemera gain gravitas | Making it consequential
A black hydrant on cast iron pillar stands next to the crumbling brick wall of Old St Chads | Enjoy: hide and go seek during the day; toilet facilities at night.
Peacock Passage | Peering in the window of a Gym I’ll never use
Car door slam | A different web for a different walker.
The chestnut tree comes into view | The tree a meeting point; a location for conversation
I retrace my steps, and the connecting path burns into my memory | before darting off into a cluster of trees on the path back home.
Telephone Conversation 2:
As we produce the social spaces around us, both materially and across digital networks, we are engaging in the production of space through movement. How we conceive of this movement determines how we will practice and live in the spaces we create.
Jason Farman, Mobile Interface Theory (New York: Routledge, 2011), 141.
from stillness to disappearance
emerged to pull me further on into the field
from afar who went immediately inside
high above, took me at steady pace
moving too quickly to keep up
a soft breeze
Briefly I let myself be nudged by
carrying a pet container stopped on a corner to chat
Keen to avoid following people
Instinct to stop following
I allowed myself to drift, handing over control to the
Skirting along warm pavement following
Driving me steadily to the hedge at the edge of the field
Following or drawn towards?
My attention was interrupted by
Chain saw sounds
hammering and chainsaws on a distant building site
Always towards the builders
I moved towards them until my route intersected a desire path
The colour red a jumper towards a bus terminal constant red movement meandering back across the field through long grass to the river bank a flock of pigeons the cat settles stretches on the tarmac a leaf that moves once with gusto and then not at all
Telephone Conversation 3:
the possibility of escalation was embedded in participant’s sense making of following to the extent that for many if the practice did not escalate, despite their subjective experience, participants felt unable to verify that something had happened.
Fiona Vera-Gray, Men’s Intrusion, Women’s Embodiment (London: Routledge, 2017).
iv. the visual frame
The four sections of the walk resolve here:
I stayed still to explore my visual frame. I walked through the Mall to see the ins and outs. Engaged with the simultaneity of stories-so-far. Outside the pigeons change position but stay within the square. These repeated movements are choreographed.
Telephone Conversation 4:
If, however, the spatial is thought of in the context of space-time and as formed out of social interrelations at all scales, then one view of a place is a particular articulation of those relations, a particular moment in those networks of social relations and understandings.
Doreen Massey, Space, Place and Gender (Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 1994), 5.