bodies intersect buildings

Working Group Facilitator: Danica Selem

Bodies Intersect Buildings is a School of Apocalypse working group that explores the ways in which architecture and built environment shape our physical, social and emotional bodies and behaviors. Formed in the Fall of 2016, BiB continues to develop tools and choreographies to claim our right to move, feel and interact freely in the spaces we inhabit.

Our brains contain a high-resolution map of our bodies. There are patches of neurons that respond to touch on your toes, their neighboring neurons respond to touch on your leg, and so on. But there are also groups of neurons in charge of recognizing the space around the body, which is called the peripersonal space. 

In its first iteration the group created a choreography, written as a series of instructions on a poster ("Spatial Victim") inspired by the ever-present choking victim posters hung up in restaurants and public spaces. This choreography is designed to give people tools to connect with and investigate this peripersonal space. Ultimately, we hope to engage a practice of growing our embodied power and agency by not falling victim to mindlessly obeying the instructions inherent in a space. 

The group is now working on an audio version of the choreography, as well as a booklet, in order to develop mobile tools to participate in this practice.