Impervious Intimacy

Caitlyn Cook

This was a 1:1 piece that included ordinary, non-ordinary, and silent conversation. The difference: there was a glass wall between you and your conversation partner. This piece seeks to make manifest the invisible distance, the  sanitary shield, the arms-distance mask we sometimes hold with people, even those most intimate, in our lives. It’s that sense of wanting intimacy, sensing it so close, but somehow still feeling a vaporous chasm between one another. Having an embodied experience of this shield in conversation, we ‘see’ what this feels like. And possibly discover… What do we get out of the shield? Do we like it? Do we want to crack it? Do we really want to see and be seen?

The conversation partner sometimes was Caitlyn, sometimes your gallery comrade, or even strangers. The work began from when you sat on the seat in front of the glass and ended when you left. It lasted as long as you liked. There was no obligation to speak. There was no obligation to do anything.

I had a conversation with you. I came close. Not to your skin—to your you. There was a moment where something seemed to crack and I thought I got beyond the sanitary shield, the corrected and approved mask. To see you spontaneous. Now. Alive. The intimacy of the moment passed like an unreached orgasm, or a seized rollercoaster, mid-ride. Somehow there was something still between us. An invisible distance. A thin space of zero gravity. I want to see you. I want to see you. I want to see YOU. Will you let me see you?