Conversations about holding things dear
by Alexandra Baybutt, Mira Loew, Jane Frances Dunlop

What we hold dear is often ineffable and intangible, how we hold it dear is often inarticulable and irrational. Speaking about the things we hold dear changes physicality. Muscles relax, eyes see differently, qualities in our bodies shift in a process of grappling with those things we hold dear. The processes of knowing what we hold dear and why it is worth anything to us require us to navigate our thoughts and how our thinking moves us, alone and with others, in our thoughts and in our bodies and what we allow others to engage with.

holding dear plays in the intimacy of passing ideas, using conversational structures to insist that we can have exchange whose importance does not collapse into a valued trading. It experiments with collaboration as a radical generous place for moving ideas without commodifying them. Through a live exchange that uses movement, text and photography we will consider our attempts explain what we hold dear, how we hold it dear and what happens when we share these things with others.

holding dear is a series of public ‘demonstrations’  and private ‘conversations’ that perform our collective attempts to understand what we hold dear. Using movement, text and images, the ‘demonstrations’ make visible our collective navigation of our questions. Between the demonstrations, we will invite audience members to privately perform ‘conversations’ on the same questions. The intention is to make our attempts to grapple with holding dear available to those who do not wish to or cannot participate in a conversation while making transparent what participating might entail.

Deliberately un-projected, the private ‘conversations’ would allow single members of the audience to explore what they hold dear. With the audience member’s permission, the private ‘conversations’ may be photographed either through out or simply at the beginning and the end of the ‘conversation’. The photographic material will be made privately available to the individual participants as well as being presented, with permission, on holding-dear.tumblr.com. Here, everyone is invited to participate our conversations.

A commitment to the value of collaboration and conversation as a sustaining facet of being is at the heart of this work.


Jane Frances Dunlop is an artist and writer, creating language performances and collaborations.

Mira Loew is a photographer and visual artist, hosting performance events and collaborations.

Alexandra Baybutt is a movement artist and educator, making performances, intervention structures and collaborations.

We will be creating conversation-process strategies and trialling them during February & March.


Jane Frances Dunlop

Mira Loew

Alexandra Baybutt

Image was taken by Mira Loew.
This work was submitted by Alexandra Baybutt, Mira Loew, Jane Frances Dunlop on 18 March 2014.

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