Surrogate: a measure of your absence
Finding comfort for loneliness, one reaches to other people, activity to engage in, and/or a relationship with their environment. Often, the search uncovers a yearning that a surrogate cannot compensate for. In a 3 hour performance to film, I dug soil out of the land and filled a pink cotton sack scaled to human dimensions. I then laid with the sack, looking for the land, the place, the environment to replace the feeling of loss felt by not feeling the intimacy of another.
Performance Duration: 3 hours; 223 lbs. of hand dug Maine soil filled into a cotton sack (dimensions of sack: 78 x 25 x 7"); 2016 All photos by Carol Ayoob
Creating the surrogate
The sack was filled with soil, hand dug in Castle Hill, Maine. It was loosened with a spade and then primarily dug through tree roots by hand. Sack dimensions are 78 x 25 x 7" and it weighs 223 pounds.
Being with surrogate
Creating surrogate was an intimate experience. I filled it by hand and sewed it shut with a needle and thread. Before closing it up, I pulled it to a beautiful tree lined area and slipped inside. After sewn up, I laid with the surrogate, quietly observing.
Leaving surrogate behind
I left surrogate in Castle Hill, Maine, where artist Carol Ayoob, continues to document its evolution. The fabric stains with moisture; an animal dug inside to build a nest; eventually, the elements tore off the top of the sack to expose the beautiful green insides in contrast to the weather worn environment.