The title of a series of three works I / Object, paid homage to Hannah Wilke, a formative influence on my early work. For these performances, I worked with a set of portable steps used to access a stage, sourcing the object from the location each time. This included the Red Gallery in Hull, England; Bunkier Sztuki in Krakow, Poland; and a former factory in Halle, Germany. Over the duration of these highly physical performances, I developed a choreography expressing the cycle from agency to acted upon, control to breakdown, powerless to powerful, charge to release.
I began my artistic practice in the late 1990s creating durational performances in both art venues and city spaces in Glasgow and Hull. My emerging practice was strongly influenced by the post-industrial architecture and atmosphere of the North, the force of transitions in the economy, politics and society, and the accumulated conditions of class and gender. The early years of my practice centered on performance as a means of exploring the politics but also the poetics of the body. I made performances that employed minimal materials, exploring the shifting positions of subjecthood and objecthood projected onto bodies in social space, and experienced by the individual as fluxing internal states over time. I often worked in series, pursuing an empirical inquiry from one situation to the next, an aesthetic and critical approach that I would later recognise in the philosophy of thinkers including William James.