The Mark of the Creature: Walking as Inquiry

We approach walking not as the mark or province of the human, but as a fundamental mobility practice shared across all forms of life. Walking, in this respect, bears the mark of the ‘creature’ rather than being emblematic of human exceptionality. No creature walks alone, and yet no walk is ever the same. Each walk conveys a singular act of creative motility, a unique mode of aesthetic expression, an Art of living and learning with other creatures. Walking, in this sense, expresses the movement and creativity at the heart of creaturely life.

Alexandra Lasczik | David Rousell | Amy Cutter-Mackenzie-Knowles
The summit of a hill known as The Garth or Mynydd y Garth, located between the communities of Llantwit Fardre and Pentyrch  in Wales.

The very act of walking in this technological age is considered an “almost obsolete” activity[i], and is therefore subversive.

Continuing my Walking as a Form of Inquiry practice, I have begun to formulate a list of thoughts/intentions. These will be refined as the practice and my understanding evolves, but for now this is a repository and crucible for developing thoughts and threads…

  • Noticing: paying attention to what is figural in my sphere of awareness at any given moment.
  • Awareness of my own privilege to be able to occasionally walk for pleasure at this time. (An examination around this…walking as a basic human right necessary for wellbeing…)
  • Ableist consideration: acknowledgment that I can physically access some areas and how this might be experienced by those who cannot, or experience it differently.
  • An awareness of settler colonialist effects and constraints in the landscape, and how this may be impacting current climate concerns.
  • Finding context through research into the topography I engage with, as well as a psychogeographical sensing of historic events/alterations/trauma of the land. (For more on rural as opposed to the usual urban psychogeography see:
  • Human and more-than-human interaction/observation
  • Artmakings as observances/rituals: arrangements of found material as offering to Spirits of Place /Ancestors/ walkers who come afterwards.
  • Recording of (in the form of photography/notes/sketches/found objects), and transmuting of experience into art/poem/stream of consciousness etc.

In the current social ecosystem – the one that produces every year over 70 million cars,[1] and the one where the new “flying planet”, with over 11 million persons in the air every day,[2] grows relentlessly – walking stands as an increasingly necessary practice and mind-set.Herman Bashiron Mendolicchio

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