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the shadows

site-specific walking video performance

The Demolition Project (Alisa Oleva + Debbie Kent)

Omnibus Theatre

London

march 2022

 

What is it like to follow a stranger through the city – a stranger who may or may not know you are following them?

 

The Shadows is a site-specific work that bridges the virtual and the real worlds. It’s a short, collaborative film that is soundtracked by the city, a story that is only completed when the participant walks in the city’s unpredictable streets.

 

The Shadows seems simple: it is based on a record of a lone woman walking in the streets of Clapham. As a participant, you download or stream the video of the walk to your phone and the challenge is to follow the route taken in the film as, phone in hand, you play it back. At the same time you enter the experience of being in a film, playing a role of someone following a woman – a woman who exists only in the past, in a pattern of pixels, and who may or may not be a fiction.

 

The aim is to stir questions – questions about the agency of a woman walking alone in the city, questions about the power balances in watching and being watched, of leading and following. What sort of experience is this? Where does the power lie? Are you in the film or are you in the audience? Above all, can a film be made in fragments, putting recorded images with live sound, forcing the audience out of their seat and into the weather? 

Omnibus Theatre website


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