On Friday September 14, 2007 at 6PM EST performances occurred across 21 cities spanning the globe. This project, called 21 Cities at Once Performed, was part of the Conflux Festival. Curated by Nat Slaughter and Hope Hilton, the way they write described the project really resonated with my interest in clothing:
As a curatorial collective, we are interested in wireless network systems existing not only through the use of computers and the internet, but through a human awareness of simultaneous participation and collective consciousness.I think clothing can be a "wireless network system" that is outside all things tech-y. Ideas about social status & behavior are communicated through clothing, as well as messages of approval, resistance, and memory. I wrote a bit more about these ideas here and in my MA dissertation.
At the time of the performance I was scheduled to fly out of LaGuardia airport in New York City. I figured I would be right over the city at exactly 6PM. The idea of being over the city instead of on the streets like everyone else intrigued me. I would become a part of a whole group of airplanes in motion, which itself is actually a wireless network connecting cities.
So I decided to document my participation in the largest wireless network in the sky (surely by weight anyway!) by constructing a garment that could record my experience. I made a paper flight vest that I folded carefully and brought onto the plane and wore throughout the flight. I think the idea of recording experience in clothing is something people really do all the time. We have examples in everything from lucky socks to wedding dresses to gift garments unsuitable for wear but always cherished and kept anyway. Here's my flying experience:
I flew with Justin Hardison who did a field recording of our flight, available here.