Featured Long Durational Work
Thirst, and the Martyr (2011), J. J. McCracken
Duration: Seven Hours
The Martyr is at once a hoarder and a provider. She may be viewed as opposing sides of the same character, at war with each other — or she is two individuals at odds, refusing compromise and unable to work together. By examining actions of self-service, self-sacrifice, and self-centeredness, “Thirst, and the Martyr” questions the availability and distribution of resources critical to our survival on this planet. Two blindfolded women laden with hundreds of ceramic bowls and gourds full of water are tethered together back-to-back. Each attempts to reach a trough ahead of her to scoop water using the long ladles affixed to her arms. When she prevails over the will of her counterpart, water spills as she raises a ladle to drink.