Cat’s Cradle on Dam Square?

emma cats cradledam lines drawingoverview cats cradleHad an idea for a work in public space and – very unusual for me – worked on it by doing drawings. First one you see is the little girl playing cat’s cradle. It was her trying to learn to crochet, and me remembering how I used to play this game and having to remind myself of  how it was done, that was at the basis of the idea. I could not remember how to do the game with my conscious mind, but my hands remembered, once I had a piece of string. Striking example of  ‘the body as a slow mind’!

Then I did a thought experiment, making people play the parts of the fingers, and situating it on Dam square in Amsterdam. Which I then sketched, see second drawing. To give people looking at the sketches an idea of how the hands can remember things I crocheted a couple of simple strings and put them under the sketches. As you can see, green is the favourite color of participants in my atelier at the Tractieweg.

I’m now researching materials for a larger-than-life string. Also I might want to use the sculpture on Dam square as one of the ‘fingers’ – the parachute would be a great figure for this. Will also have to create some sort of choreography, and rehearse, because people don’t of themselves cooperate like fingers do.  Would love to make Dam square a playground in this manner, and have people use their bodies in an orchestrated movement  connected by a string.  Also it’s such an intuitive game recognisable all over the world…..