Persistence in Time

After a video where I made 100 cups of tea, resetting the kitchen before each one, done to illustrate my own resistance to change, addictions and dependancies on routine by performing the same action again and again, as I did in life, I noticed some interesting points that I had not intended in the video: The clock continued running throughout, it was something I hadn’t reset. I took this to say how my routine of making tea was devoid of time, each individual cup is the same as the last, it matters not when it is made as every ingredient in the cup as well as in the process is the same.

Initial doodle

This got me thinking about the passing of time itself in relation to repeating an action; at the end of the day I was exhausted from making tea for 5 hours. I made mistakes during the tea-making process, but these were hidden from the camera. I want to show these mistakes, show my fatigue, show the literal passing of time. This is where I came up with the idea of documenting a clock cycle. In it, I would draw the clock every minute from point 1 to point 2, 12 hours later, and be only allowed to mark out the next clock face at the turn of the minute. I would have to endure the whole 12 hours, expending effort periodically, unable to have an extended period of rest, unable to leave to go to the toilet. Perhaps I might even not allow myself to eat or drink during the process.

I call this style ‘Perseverance Art’ and distinguish it from Performance art by the fact that the ‘performance’ only occurs to create the ‘piece’ that is a non-performance outcome and from ‘Endurance Art’ by the fact that it is not the act of going through pain or some form of suffering that is the piece but the perseverance aspect is specified by the action being one that is long, arduous, expressing or excluding the passing of time or use of energies as exercises in futility.

Clock size experiments, pen, pencil and paint

This piece in particular is looking at the literal representation of 12 hours of time. As I fatigue, the clock faces will distort, become lazier, I expect to lose control as time passes. In the photograph is the experiments on material (pencil, pen or paint) for the piece, checking out the sizes involved and the conclusion reached is that the appeal of the paint and a 5*5 cm2 size makes for a much more accessible artwork for me to produce, and is appeasing to the eye. Below is the approximate size (1.25m*1.45m) that would be produced by 5*5 clock faces when painted out for the 720 minutes in a 12 hour period.

IMAG0336 copy
Approximate Size


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