Walks and Naps

Loki is an energetic dog. He loves to play and go for walks but as a growing puppy, a large proportion of his day is spent sleeping. Befitting the lazy dog days of summer, he finds lots of comfortable (and some not so comfortable) places to snooze.

 

We usually go for a walk in the afternoon or early evening after the heat of the day begins to subside. There is a nature reserve close to our house with open fields and woodland. The images I am collecting on our walks, like the images of Loki sleeping, are beginning to reveal the different ways he moves in the world. From the bold inquisitive stances as he looks out across the open grass, to the cautious stretching as he sniffs something unfamiliar in the undergrowth.

Dog Days

Sirius rises late in the dark, liquid sky
On summer nights, star of stars,
Orion’s Dog they call it, brightest
Of all, but an evil portent, bringing heat
And fevers to suffering humanity.

Homer, The Iliad.

The long hot days of summer, when the heat makes us lazy and the dog star shines bright in the night sky; these are known as the dog days.  Years ago the dog days were associated with madness, illness and the wrath of the gods. Thuderstorms rolled across the sky, disease would be spread in hot humid conditons and crops would prosper or fail.

Now we are not so superstitious; the dog star does not hold such significance for us and the heat of the summer is more likely to be associated with barbeques and beach trips than madness and fever. During the dog days of 2019, from 3rd July to the 11th August, I am undertaking an artistic experiment, an attempt to collaborate with my cockerdor puppy, Loki.

This will be comprised of documenting our day to day routine; training, walks, vet visits, and naps, as well as finding opportunities for sculptural and performative making together. This documentation will take the form of photographs, drawings, and writing on my part and objects, mark making and performative responses from Loki. I will facilitate the communication of Loki’s contributions through my own and without a predetermined plan we will begin to explore ways of making together.

About the artists:

Beth is a 31 year old British-American woman. She has been practicing art for her whole life in one way or another. She enjoys walks in the countryside, travelling, and reading. She sleeps for around 8 hours every night and sometimes naps for an hour or so during the day.  Her favourite things are having coffee with friends and nights in with her partner Andrew and Loki.

Loki is a 6 month old cocker spaniel, labrador cross. He has never consciously practiced art. He enjoys walks in the countryside, playing fetch and chewing on plants in the garden. He sleeps for around 8 hours every night and around 14 hours every day. His favourite things are his teddy and tummy scratches on the sofa.