On average, we take 16 breaths per minute, 960 breaths an hour, 23,040 breaths a day, 8,409,600 a year. If we live to 80, we’ll take about 672,768,000 breaths in a lifetime.
Yet…time feels infinitely longer when you hold your breath.
Using very slow underwater cinematography, the video installation hold, explores our relationship to water and breathing, which can feel both terrifying and compelling. How does time slow down as breathing changes? Focusing on people able to hold their breath for extended periods, such as surfers and free divers, the work considers how fear gives way to a different experience of durational time. What can we understand about our most fundamental action from such extreme experience?Fragments of interviews with medical professionals, surfers and free divers drift through the soundscape. A singer, trained to sustain notes, chants a Sephardic song. The sound places us ‘in the middle’ of held durations of notes and breaths. hold explores the shifting multi temporalities of water as it changes form and as it is experienced from above and below its surface.
hold premiered at Ideas Platform, Artspace, Sydney October 3- October 27, 2019.