What is it like to follow a stranger through the city – a stranger who may or may not know you are following them?
The Shadows is a site-specific work that bridges the virtual and the real worlds. It’s a short, collaborative film that is soundtracked by the city, a story that is only completed when the participant walks in the city’s unpredictable streets.
The Shadows seems simple: it is based on a record of a lone woman walking in the streets of Clapham. As a participant, you download or stream the video of the walk to your phone and the challenge is to follow the route taken in the film as, phone in hand, you play it back. At the same time you enter the experience of being in a film, playing a role of someone following a woman – a woman who exists only in the past, in a pattern of pixels, and who may or may not be a fiction.
The aim is to stir questions – questions about the agency of a woman walking alone in the city, questions about the power balances in watching and being watched, of leading and following. What sort of experience is this? Where does the power lie? Are you in the film or are you in the audience? Above all, can a film be made in fragments, putting recorded images with live sound, forcing the audience out of their seat and into the weather?
The Shadows was developed from a live performance that The Demolition Project made for the B_Tour festival in Berlin in 2015 and is inspired by the ideas of following strangers through actual, imaginary and virtual worlds in the work of various artists, from Vito Acconci (Following Piece) and Janet Cardiff (Her Long Black Hair) to Francis Alÿs (Doppelganger) and Sophie Calle (Suite Venitienne, The Shadow).
The Demolition Project is Alisa Oleva and Debbie Kent. They have been collaborating since 2013 and have made work on maps, walking and the urban in cities including London, Manchester, Leeds, Moscow, Berlin, Belgrade and Vilnius, while each has their own practice [can supply more details if needed]!
This performance will take place remotely (on mobile walking around local area).
The Shadows can be taken at any time – there will be a day and night-time version – and is designed as an experience for one person. It takes place mainly in residential streets and busy areas but if you feel uncomfortable or unsafe walking alone it is possible to do it with a friend.
Participants need a phone that can stream or download video. The Shadows starts at the entrance to Omnibus Theatre. It ends at a short distance from the theatre. Instructions for finding a way back to the tube and to the theatre will be provided at the end of the piece.
Access details will be sent to the email address you used to book within 24 hours of the performance, in addition to your booking confirmation which is immediate.
Only one ticket is required per device.