• the floor's the limit
  • the floors the limit mid
  • the floors the limit caitlin
  • the floors the limit kerry
  • the floors the limit alyson
  • the floors the limit close

the floor's the limit, 2009

3 channel video installation: 3 DVD set, 3 plasma  HDTV’s, 3 Blu-ray DVD players, 2 sound

bars, custom TV mount

38” x 51” x 51”

cinematography: Jason Ebanks    editing: Avril Jacobson

edition of  9, 2 A/P


the floor’s the limit is an in situ response to the Olga Korper Gallery. In the summer of 2008, the 35th anniversary of the gallery, I asked three rollerskaters to map the gallery space. The three videos in this package document the skaters’ exploration of, and interaction with, the gallery floor and walls. Each skater addressed the request to map the space differently.  Kerry is animated and confident, Alyson is shy and evasive of the camera, while Caitlin is mischievous and dissects the space while “bouncing off the walls”. The paths the skaters weave parallel the artmaking process as they morph from lyrical and deliberate, to competitive, then back to contemplative.

As the skaters perform the camera tracks and negotiates their movement. Sometimes this results in a choreographed ‘catch me if you can’, play-for-play sequence, as the camera anticipates their movement and sweeps forward with them. At other times the camera pulls back to observe the skater from a fixed position. While the skater may acknowledge the camera’s gaze, she skates with complete autonomy. The idea of looking at performance in relation to the interior space evolved in part from many comments on this particular space. In the floor’s the limit the space keeps pace with the art.

My piece is both a celebration of the gallery space and celebration for me - being my first show in the space. I chose rollerskating because of the polished floor, the idea of performance, the act of conquering the space... and as the camera tries to keep up with the skater in some ways it is a catch me if you can play for play. Artmaking is both a mental and physical practice and at this point in my own career, it is also about endurance, keeping focused, navigating the ups and downs and strategizing.

Skating is both lyrical and deliberate, competitive and contemplative. As I see it the movement could incorporate forward movement (some laps around the gallery), backward movement, diagonal and any sort of flourishes you want to add. Serious and steadfast at times and other times more relaxed and playful. As this is not a continuous camera take, there will be time to experiment in situ.