Am I Ever Alone: dancing to someone else’s tune is an interactive sound and painting performance. The performance was included in a group exhibition Folly at Smith Studio Gallery Cape Town, 2nd February 2017. Scheduled as part of the First Thursdays program that runs in the city on the first Thursday of the month. Galleries and restaurants open late in the city and this draws a large crowd of foot traffic circulating the streets and venues. For this performance I set up a specially designed easel and canvas-apron in the courtyard of the gallery. My role was to inhabit the canvas with a blindfold covering my eyes and a bluetooth headset in my ears. I then painted in response to sound selected by the visitors to the exhibition. Two assistants, Gabrielle Kruger and Adrian Ranger helped to facilitate and record the visitors’ engagement.
Visitors to the First Thursday event were prompted by Adrian and a card that asked visitors to take a moment to listen to themselves and use what comes up to prompt an online search for a sound track/clip that expressed what they heard. Once selected the person could listen to the sound on wifi headphones with me while the next person selected the following track/clip. My intention was to create an intimate moment of communication between myself and each of the visitors who chose to take part amongst the noise and bustle of the First Thursday crowd. The visitor’s ‘voice’ communicated through the sound they selected and my reply to be seen as the visual action of painting on the canvas. Gabrielle recorded each sound selected and the colour I chose in response for each track onto the glass of the courtyard space. So the rest of the audience could only access the sound through the text on the glass and my painting actions.