For International Walking Encounters/Conference 2021 I propose to assemble a group of walkers for the duration of the Prespes walking event. These walkers will commit to choosing and making a walk on their own for one hour each day. Every day they will repeat this walk exactly. During the week they will choose to perform an interruption or improvisation within their walks. Each day they will make reflections – these may be in the form of audio, writing, drawing, video, photographs. On alternate days we will meet together to share and explore these reflections.
The aim will be for each walker to get to know a route in Prespes (or the surrounding area) in a little more detail. In the spirit of the theme “Walking as Question” the repetition of the walk will give rise to encounters, incidents, questions, observations and reflections that can shed light on how we relate to our environment on an everyday basis. We will question how the everyday can reveal deep and meaningful life connections; how we might use these understandings to build connection and communication across differences and diversity.
We will assemble the gathered material in a way that can be shown throughout the project/conference week. If members agree I would like to be able to create a short, collaborative public performance using the gathered materials for the end of the meeting/conference.
Limit: 10 walkers (because of reflection time). Each walker will choose an everyday walk, approximately 30 minutes – 1 hour per day. The length is not so important – it can be as short as 100 metres if that feels the right length. They will walk this same walk once a day (but may walk it more often if they wish) for at least 5 days. Every other day (so 3 times during the week) we will meet to reflect and discuss our experiences and encounters. I will invite walkers to make some interruptions and interventions during their walks which they may accept or not.
During the week we will see how we wish to gather and document our experiences – maybe we will record some conversations, maybe we will draw or write, take photos, move, dance, sing…it will depend on the walkers. At the end of the week we will bring these together in some form and potentially create a performance of some kind. Again, knowing the intensity of such conference meetings we will try to stay as open as possible to opportunities and also to the limitations of time and energy.