Zurich Rituals (In Other Words Symposium), 2009

Performance

Clients: The public audience

Location: Kunsthalle Zürich, Switzerland

Questions: Where do physicality and language intersect? What do you think about metempsychosis (the transmigration of souls)?

Question: Where do physicality and language intersect?

Marcus Coates: Quite exciting. Very bright light, nothing but this light – not necessarily a lovely experience. There was really nothing – no sense of the floor or any walls. I have to move. Walking, walking. The white started to turn into texture. Snow – it felt incredibly light, a slight resistance all over me. A smell, strong, like tangerines, very vivid. Could smell an orange colour in front of me but it was totally white. Contradiction between smelling and seeing. Carried on. Smell is stronger. Walking towards coast. Small sea birds – like penguins / cormorants, but smaller. Crested auklets, smelling like oranges. The auklets smell to identify themselves and their colony, to distinguish from other birds – a physical language. Language and physical presence do not intersect. They are the same thing – no point where they meet. They start off the same.

Question asked by an audience member and Coates’s response 
during the Zurich Rituals, Kunsthalle Zürich, 2009