Standing Still/ Lunch Time
Not so long ago noon was determined by the sun reaching its zenith in relation to your body. Noon was determined by you and the sun - your body was the sundial. Isn’t it marvelous to think how the world would have felt to possess your own time, independent from your friend on the west end or your cousin in Calgary? To understand why our two noons now align is found in the mess of industrialization, colonization, trains and government. In 19th century North America our noons were lost.
In an act to extend thinking about your and my noon, in my project Standing Still/ Lunch Time I followed the sun around the Earth in the approximation of noon as established by Greenwich Standard Time. Beginning on August 12 noon time in Samoa (August 11 in Edmonton) I called post offices in each time zone in the world. Samoa is the only country of the world divided by the date line, and thus chose to end my project one day later on April 12 at noon by calling American Samoa. I inhabited the sun’s zenith for an entire rotation around the Earth and connected with people directly under its glare. I called post offices as they are places in most towns and cities where time is displayed either on the exterior or interior for the public as well as due to their link in establishing the standardization of time through their relationship with railroads.
I called Apia in Samoa, Wellington New Zealand, Truuk in Micronesia, Buka Papua New Guinea, Manila Phillipenes, Seoul South Korea, Bangkok Thailand, Astana Kazakstan, Halifax Canada, Port Coal Florida USA, Mexico City Mexico, Salt Lake City USA, Dawson City Canada, Anchorage Alaska USA, Honolulu Hawaii USA, and Pago Pago American Samoa. Due to daylight saving in North America there was no noon anywhere in the world at 3pm in Edmonton.
Standing Still/ Lunch Time was performed in the gallery for 16 hours. The resulting work of this 24 hours period was a world map with hand drawn times zones and notes about each call (location, topics discusses, language spoken, local weather) displayed the remainder of the exhibition. I recorded my conversations on a tape recorder and the resulting tapes were available for listening.