Made for Walking
Participatory Walks with Todd Shalom of SVACE
August 6, 2018
by Michael Bilsborough
We welcomed guests to join visual and performance-based artist Todd Shalom for one of his signature participatory walks. Located at The High Line Park and titled “Help Yourself,” this one-time edition of Shalom’s walks encouraged participants to poetically respond to their pasts and the current local climate, via Shalom’s guided prompts from poetry, performance, and sound art. Scroll down to see excerpts from Shalom’s prompts paired with Stephanie McGovern's photos and slideshows from the event.
From Todd Shalom: "Afterwards, the sunlight was fading. We made a sound poem from the list of rules at the High Line, walked over to the Star on 18 Diner Cafe, spoke about gentrifcation, and asked participants to visualize their relationships with their neighborhoods and their neighbors. To end the walk, I asked participants to come up with a spot within a few minutes walking distance that they want to respond to and we crafted a prompt together. The spot decided upon was a fancy furniture store on 18th Street. Its large glass window was in stark contrast to the brick wall next door. Keeping in mind a diagonal line that ran through the sidewalk, we froze into position as individuals throwing bricks through the store window."
"At the end of the walk, I revealed that the building we went to for the News videos wasn’t actually the new NBC headquarters (fake news), but it’s actually the old National Biscuit Company building. NaBisCo. The first Oreo cookies were made there (for real).“
Todd Shalom will be teaching The Participatory Walk, a six-week course on Wednesdays this fall, from September 26th to October 31st. Read more about Todd and his work in “Walk the Walk.” See more updates and stories on our Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram pages!