From within this artist guest-worker position, we will work on the factory floor, maintaining the same hours as the other workers and in equal view of the tourists, to develop and produce a series of non-functional products in response to the situation of our own labour and the labour of others around us [tourists, tour guides, factory workers, administrators, shoppers, sales people, museum staff, etc]. (1)
We had a very intensive week in the factory starting each morning at 6:15am with the glass workers. We positioned ourselves in a very orderly fashion behind the tourist view space. We are there to be viewed and observed by the tourists, glass workers and management. The days have been filled with group exercises/workshops, meditation, conceptual challengers and collaborative discussion about each persons proposed product development. Nothing is out of bounds and there is so much opportunity to develop ideas individually as well as through the supportive critical feedback of the group. Slowly we are starting to get to know the glass workers and this allows for an opportunity to understand from the other side.
Things I have noticed and thought about since arriving at the glass factory this week:
- The glass workers move their bodies a lot…never remaining long in the same position – whether they are sitting or standing.
- There is a significant relationship between the blower and the other - they are tied together in a symbiotic relationship. They need each other.
- They work off signals both verbal and non-verbal body movements. A lot of sensing between the two eg. a tap of the blowers foot means the wooden form is to open.
- Audio recording the glass blowing and breaking process…a form of eaves dropping …the works that are not perfect
- Continuous running water tap always at the ready for the glass blower.
Alongside the very full days the group come together in the evening for a swim at a, still chilly, lake. Then we meet again for a meal together, lovingly prepared by one of the artists. And occasionally, a short or long walk through the farming lands and woods before going to bed in full daylight.
Sissi Westerburg -SWE; Daniel Peltz -USA/SWE; Alex Auriema -USA, Filip Olszewski -USA; Robyn Backen – AUS
1 . Excerpt from Daniel Petz’s proposal for the residency/workshop