Tagged: Walking Assignment

Operation: HHH Part 2

1st image uow 2nd hug IMG_5062 IMG_5106 IMG_5197 IMG_5198

Date: 22/04/2016
Location: University of Wollongong
Company: Barry (student from the indigenous centre)
Feeling: Happy to be alive but emotionally exhausted after all those hugs


A lazy Friday with the weather being so good just to kick back and sleep in. unfortunately, though I had to get up and go to a lecture but because of the comfortableness of the weather I slept in and missed it (thank you my bed for being so gouow mappingod). After missing the lecture (YEAH ya) I waited outside for my mate to come around and help me in my social walk which was so good but extremely tiring at the end, in the end though I got the result I needed.

For my second walking activity, I have taken to Wollongong universities camps. Starting from the top at the indigenous centre and finish close to the bottom at the engineering department I decide to continue following the advice of one of my classmate who told me to ‘follow the hug’ for this part of the exercise. Reason being because the camps have a lot more people walking about on Friday and unlike crown street which is only a straight line from the top to the bottom. The camps break up and has different intersections leading to different part of the camps but still interconnected to lead to certain point around the Uni, which was perfect to take me on quite a journey on the day.
With the assistance of my mate ‘Barry’ and the borrowed camera from the art building, we began our journey from the front door of the centre and began to head towards people walking along the footpath at which point we came in contact with our first subject. Following the same routine as the one I did on Crown-street where I would negotiate for a hug first then use the poster on the way back, I beckoned the girl that we encountered for only a hug. Surprisingly though she agreed with only a question to why but accepting the answer, it was a good start.
It was brilliant because not long after another girl came along and she agreed without a thought and from there I began to follow the crowd but most of all the hugs which most people agreed to. It leads me and ‘Barry’ zig-zagging through the Uni as each person we encountered agreed without hesitation to a hug, it was literally every threw minutes someone new came around and sometimes they would say no but they mostly all said yes. With each encounter we made, we would always follow on from the path they came from or the path that the people were on that asked for a hug.random hug
People saw what I and ‘Barry’ were doing and would ask us for a hug. It even got to the point where I didn’t even have to say a thing and just hug the next person behind the one I was hugging. It started an amazing chain that not only did I hug the students but also the gardeners, movers, teachers from all the department, pretty much everyone on camp.
Once a got to the area around the library (which was one of the busy area’s) I didn’t even have to say much as the chain of hugs bouncing from one person to the next was enough to move me and everyone around to what I was doing (which really I was just walking and hugging).
I knew that the people who wanted a hug would stretch out their arms to either side and approach me with a smile which was the suggestion of the hugs that everybody wanted from me. Everybody who I saw had a good laugh and an amazing smile that went all around to everyone I saw and came into contact with.
Even more surprisingly though was the fact that I forgot all about ‘Barry’ when we were in the library area, as each hug I gave I completely lost myself following where the hugs lead me but most of all I didn’t even recall hearing ‘Barry’ asking permission for the photos that he was taking of the other student. Of course, he did ask some of the people we encounter but I think he went quit because of all the number we were getting, even more so was the fact that people didn’t mind it because they all really just wanted a nice hug that even I have to say that some gave really good ones. Not 10 out 10s but good enough to be at the top.
If matching the amount of force I applied to my hug wasn’t hard enough I was getting so many people to hug me that it was getting a little harder to keep the tally system up to date with each hug leading to a random person coming out of nowhere asking for the hug instead of me doing so. It was still really fun though following each hug that leads me and ‘Barry’ from left to right to straight through, to even coming in contact with some of my other teacher which was even more hilarious. Unfortunately, ‘Barry’ didn’t take the picture of me and Jo (teacher from the art department) doing a little dance of hugs and fear, very funny stuff. As we continued following the hug we finally reached the engineering department’s front door which signalled our climb back up. It was great fun doing that walking and so fantastic embracing the aura of each person we came in contact and feeling their happiness and my happiness pass through each.
Now came the time of the poster which I pulled out of my left pocket. I was a bit nerve of this seeing that it didn’t go so well yesterday and I was still shaking it off a bit. So as a warm up I decided to hang around the engineering area to get the feel of how many people agreed if the question was more direct and visible. It turns out that it wasn’t that bad as I still got the couple no’s but there was so many people agreeing that it built up my confidence and then I was back in the zone.
We decide that instead of following the hug back we chose to retrace our steps to the centre which was still cool because I could then estimate the time it took for either walk and which one took the least amount of time.
The climb back up was smooth and we even passed the people we hug before and they still agreed to it again. We even passed Jo who still said no but not Agnieszka (another teacher from arts) who said, “hell yeah” and this time ‘Barry’ got the shot.IMG_5137
IMG_5147We got back to the library area and it was still bustling as before and just like before I got so many hugs that it started a chain again that I didn’t even need the poster for the most part. It was amazing but then while we were hanging around there, ‘Barry’ went to go and get an apple from the café that asked for any sort of coin, which was quite a good deal. So he went off to get one and I stood in the centre of the court continuing my hugs. Until suddenly I’m hit by this tiredness. I wasn’t outer breath or exhausted from the walk I was just tired and worn out from all the hugs I was giving. Physically I was fine but emotionally I could barely keep up but I knew I had to keep going because I was only half way there to the centre. As ‘Barry’ returned from his apple shopping we headed off back up the hill.
Continuing to receive hugs from each person we passed by I came in eye contact with this girl in a class who seemed to be giving a presentation. Immidally I showed her the stuff, and by stuff I mean the poster and she giggled then with a tilt of her head or hand (it was one of those not sure which) I walked into the building then towards their class. At first, I think she thought I wouldn’t do it but then again she had never met me before.IMG_5176

I stood at the door with the poster on my chest and the girl presenting laughing with the crowd and I looked towards the teacher who gave me a smile and then I looked back at the girl who was presenting and I knew that she approved of what was about to go down. I slow crept into the class looking around before back at the girl I saw through the window, the themselves saying, ‘do it, do it’ even the teacher got in on the crowd. And so the girl walked over and then we hugged it out in the warmest embracing of my day. The classroom cheered and the teacher approved and so did the other girls I hugged there. As I slowly exited through the door a guy came up and gave me one last hug before I left the room saying thank you and goodbye and good luck to the girls presenting. It was safe to say that my hug had to lead me into that classroom, worth it.
Returning back on to the footpath leading back to the centre the number of people we came in contact started to go down but the energy was still electric as each person we drew near grew a smile that glowed so bright that I yet again forgot that ‘Barry’. Oh well, at least the people were enjoying my poster and humour and I think ‘Barry’ too.
With only being a few steps away from the centre, the last bunch we came in contact with where the most outrages and fun loving people to have the last hugs with and share the final moment with them. Especially the last hug from my friend ‘Teisha’ who I saw in the corner of my eye strutting her way to the centre as well and I knew that she had to be the last hug and the best hug to wrap it up. Sure enough, it was a ‘Teisha’ and Harry hug that could not have ended any other way.IMG_5210
With the final photo taken and the camera returned before 12 I was set to go about my day as usual and return to class after a short rest at the centre in my corner. However, after the walk, I felt exhausted and finding the will to smile let alone move. As I felt fine physically but emotionally I was drained of my energy as it was back at the front library on our return to the centre. Could it have been the Friday bug or just that I was tired of the week, either way after my walk on Thursday I felt the same way as I did now? Tired from all those hugs.

This anomaly got me think of ‘Walter Benjamin work of mechanical reproduction’ and the existence of the aura of an artist and their work. Of how what an artist creates is the reflection of themselves and there for is the embodiment of their existence but what of Kaprow. Where the ‘social engaging artist’ or SEA is the artwork in motion where they exist within their work itself and that their Aura is stretched out to the alluring audience but to what extent does the artist take before they are pushed to their limit. After all, we are all unique in both the warmth we give to others and presence we have on in a space, where a room is not the same room filled if not all the element is not present to say it is. Everything has its presence within a space and affects it differently so the same must be said for my walking hugs. Every hug my seem the same but they are different with each individual and there required a certain approach to each individual both physically and emotionally.
In conclusion, I have deducted that my tiredness came from over using the powers of a hug and how it is not just a physical form but rather the conjoining of two people’s aura becoming as one for that breath moment of sharing one another company. To sharing the space around where it is change and different with each encounter I made on my walk.uow tallygraph of uow

Operation: HHH Harry Hugging Human’s Part 1

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Date: Thursday, 21st April 2016
Location: Crown St shopping mall, Wollongong
Company: Josip (camera guy/ co help/ moral support)
Feeling: joyfully sad yet empty in heart


Following the advice of my classmates and the ever supporting content of Bianca, I set out after class to crown st to complete my task of the walking exercise as I had planned. With the end result being extremely surprising the only thing though was that I wasn’t expecting it to be so emotionally tiring. With each hug, I drew more invigorated with the urge to seek for more human contact but never straying from the guided path that I was on. But each pause between the next intercrown st mapingaction my confidence for some reason kept dropping, as though there was an emptiness in my chest which only grew each time a person turned away my offer. Which left me at the end of the day feeling a bit washed out and kind of left with a feeling of emptiness.

I had chosen Crown st as it was the ideal location for my walking exercise because it had an area that I can confine myself to as well as getting an immense amount of data but most of all it was busy with people.
Accompanied by my fellow classmate ‘Josip’ who happily volunteered to help me with this exercise which at first I was hesitant to ask for help but Bianca had given a good argument on the importance of having a helper for my task. Which in turn proved to be true, as his assistance was welcomed with open arms.
After class had completed me and ‘Josip’ set out to collect a camera from the art building which we proceeded, with the camera in hand towards the bus bay to head into town. We arrived just as the sun had begun its descent towards the mountain but still had enough time to collect the data.
Placing my bag into one of my common area’s (comic café) that I would hang out, we set out with my notebook and pen in my right and ‘Josip’ backing me up as the camera gucrownst01y. It didn’t take long until we came in contact with our first report and surprisingly though it was someone we knew. ‘Zander’ who was hanging out with some of his mates and who just happened to be on our walking path. This was a perfect moment as it helped me and ‘Josip’ get our barring on how we were going to collaborate on this task which proves to be a good crownst01IMG_4897starting point.
Moving along we arrived outside at the top of crown st beginning the documentation I had set an app on my phone that would both track my steps and the time it would take to get to the bottom of the street. I would also do the same at the bottom with the reversal of the task and see the difference in the steps and time.
To start off with I had decided to approach the task without the poster in hand going down to the bottom of the street and once there I would come back up with the poster on display. This meant that during the first half of the walk I would need to negotiate for a hug. Which at the time I thought would prove to be the lease effective form of communication.
Surprisingly though it proved to be the complete opposite of my thought with the tremendous result having every second person I encountered giving me a hug and when they did, it started a chain that followed on to the next. But when the chain of hugs was broken it picked up again around about the second person I approached. It got such an amazing response that it took my walk into a café which I then hugged everyone in it. Which was very fun for me? I hugged the owners as well as the customers who got a great laugh out of it.IMG_4974IMG_4977IMG_4975

My path was short but my interaction on it was long as my hugs took me from one spot to the next before it led me into a store then out of it again almost taking me into another one further down.
Not only that but with every hug that I gave a glow of happiness spread across both the hugger and the people around us as they were dumb-founded to see this engagement of two individual and more so when they find out that it was a random guy giving out hugs for no reason. My hugs even lead to one point where a random stranger who was just passing through jumped in with me and the person I was hugging with, which was a great feeling as I could feel the love in the air.
They were happy for the hugs and even more so just by someone randomly asking them, even when they said no they soon after say yes when they notice me hugging someone else and decided that they wanted some of that as well.
It felt incredible, a huge response with my walk because with everyone that I came in contact with (whether they got a hug or not) they all walked away with a smile on their face. It was amazing to see that we had left a bread crumb of happy people that I think we brightened up their day a little bit. Laughter, happiness and a huge smile that I could not for the life of me get rid of. It was so busy that it was hard to keep the tally and hugs going at the same time.

So warming a delightful people where but then we had reached the bottom and that’s when things got a bit harder. ‘Josip’s’ help was so incredible that I don’t think I would have had the same result without him as he helps explain my work to the people we encountered and asked them for their permission which I didn’t even think about.
We were so happy once we reach the bottom that we didn’IMG_5005t want to waste time hanging about and wanted to dive right back into it, this time with the poster. However, though I wanted to add some restriction to it as I wanted the poster to do the talking for us which that way we kept our talk to minim and only speak if they asked ‘why we doing this’ or when we need their permission for a photo.
It started off a bit bumpy with only the first hug after five people denied but it wasn’t until we got half way up the street that the smile that I had carried had slowly begun to slip away and replace with a smile of pity for the need of a hug.
I felt tired but at the same time a bit broken inside feeling as though that the warmth that I had felt had disappeared with the sun. Stamped out by the people that look the other way as I stood in front of them with a poster saying ‘would you like a hug’, it shattered me when they kept on a walking by. I sunk deeper and deeper into my despair seeking only the warmth of someone smile and comfort of a hug but some did not smile and many did not hug me. I got whelmed up by the fact that people kept on walking by that I had to stop for a bit to collect my thoughts and settle myself down. I then continued my walk head back to the starting point of our journey, finishing up with three more hugs.
In the end, I got about 13 hugs, which isn’t even half of what I got from doing it without the sign. Nothing had changed, it was the same amount of people passing through and the same path yet we were able to finish faster up the hill than we did down hill. But when we finished my confidence was at its lowest as I couldn’t bare those responses from people that we passed on our way back. It wasn’t that they were violent or harsh or even kind which most of them were kind enough to say no thank you. It was the fact that the few that we encountered simply turn their heads and looked the other way without a word, even though they were far away to see the sign they turned their heads anyways. Which hurt but also got me curious on to this which I would like to look further into why those people acted like that.

In conclusion with a discussion with ‘Josip’ which this task felt more of an experiment than an art project, we’ve come to the conclusion that when people are presented with a direct question they give a direct response in return. Which explained the lower number hugs for the poster. But presented with the same question but through word of mouth they gave an answer with another question to ‘why’. So why is that, why do they asked yet never ask to why when they see the question on paper. My answer is that they know their answer when they see it coming but compared to when I ask someone out of the blue it makes them curious but also startled to it all and want to know why this person is asking this. If it can be seen, then people won’t question it but if it is spoken to by someone else then the urge to know arises.
I would like to look further into this as I believe that it might correspond to what I believe could be the human nature of why people do this or a new found nature that we’ve adapted over time.graph of crown stimage2016-04-26-124032

Description of operation: Harry Hugging Human’s

20160331_112335Location: Crown st plaza and Wollongong University campus

Equipment: Notebook, pens (red, blue, green), poster, camera, phone


Description of idea:
Upon the arrive of the 2nd assessment on Thursday, 31st of march we were given a brief presentation by the special guest who came to our class the day of the announcement to help our br20160331_120955ains flow with ideas on how we would approach the task. The social engagement task seemed difficult but it didn’t take me long till I came up with something that hit me during our walking activity after the lecture. Like a light bulb going off in my head it hit me, the walking exercise was about taking something simple then mixing it up from the following something to a social engaging practice so I came up with the idea of doing my walks but following the hugs to lead me to my destination. In other words, I would do an activity where I would hug and record the response from people but also following where the hug would lead me to. I would also keep a tally system to ensure a satisfied result of my walking practice.
I did have a few practice before hand and it proved to be quite good in the lead up to the beginning of my task.

How I would approach the walk:
Starting with each of my locations I would first take a photo of me before the walk then an after shot of once I reach my target goal. To do this I had decided to do a one lap walk from both locations going from the top to the bottom then walking back while remaining within the zone of the area and only stopping at a point where the road intersects with another. That rule would apply to Crown-street but with the Uni, I would walk as far as I can to the bottom or until I reach a building at which point I would retrace my steps.

During the walk:
I have taken the liberty of deciding to approach my walks in two part. The first part I would do the hugging exercise without a poster in hand and negotiate for a hug so I would have to present the question verbally. The asking polity of the person for a hug but also encourage a more interactive engagement of the second party. I would also like to point out that I would prefer to aim for a more gathering of hugs so I could get it in one fell swoop with less world past around.
The second part after completing or reaching the bottom of the first half I would turn around and walk back from where I came from but this time, I would use the poster as my means of communication, presenting the question beforehand to receive a response from the other. I would only use this as my main form of communication with less of a verbal interaction as well as applying body language to invoke my poster intent. With a gentle smile and a warming approaching walk, from both locations, I would apply this method in action.

Part 1: (the questions and words I would say)
‘hello there, I was wondering if it would be alright if I could get a hug’.
If they asked why then I would use charm and if that doesn’t work, I would just tell them about the project but I would like to try to avoid using that reason. As it drops their guard to fast and makes it less sincere whereas it being they just wanted a hug because it’s nice to feel the embrace.
Part 2: poster
Present the question written on the paper, “would you like a hug” and proceed with the hug if the answer is yes. Using body language as the main form of communication to invite the hug.image2016-04-23-143501-1


Notice the difference in language that I applied to each of my questions in the form of, ‘could I get a hug’ to, ‘would you like a hug’. For the most part, this may seem just random words used but it could be the way I present myself and the response people get from a direct and indirect question. Of how a simple word place could affect people response towards the question.

Recording system:
Breaking it up in three forms with visual, a graph and the tracking of each walk.
The first part the visual I would be companied by a second party member who would assist me in the documentation by taking the photo of each encounter I make with people and their response during and after the moment.
The second is the graph where during the walk I would keep a tally system going of the people I hugged and the gender/ age of each person I came into contact with as well as keeping one recording with the poster and the other without the poster. Then later I would attempt to put it into a graph to help the probability and the response I got from each location and see how either two response varied.
And finally as an added bonus I have downloaded an app on my phone that keeps track of the steps I take in the time it takes. Using this I would document on my general time of each part of the walk and record which one took the longest and which one took the least amount of time. The longer the walk the more interaction I had and hugs I gave.

How natural is the natural environment? Post 1: Introduction


For millions of years the earth in which we live was a natural wonderland, trees covered the mountain-side and animals wandered the vast landscape.

Now days, earth is very much a different place and the ‘natural environment’ is anything but natural.

As a collective, humans have made major changes that are seemingly irraversable, and there is no denial that the ‘natural environment’ is being destroyed more and more each day.

In order to find out exactly how little remains of our ‘natural environment’, I plan on following one rule.

I am only allowed to walk on the ‘natural environment’ to get to my destinations, e.g. grass, dirt, rocks.

By following this rule, I feel as though I will be able to get a good idea of how humans have effected the ‘natural environment’.

The way in which I will carry out the process and documentation is…

  • Pick a number of locations around the Wollongong area
  • Start at my house and walk to these location
  • Document how many man-made structures/obstacles I encounter on my walk/s
  • Any time I have to walk on concrete, roads, footpaths or any other structure that has been made or placed by humans, it will count as obstacle

This strategy has been developed from two key areas;

  1. My personal interest on how the ‘natural environment’ is constantly being transformed
  2. The walk we went on with the Waterways of The Illawarra (WOTI) group

By combining my personal interest with the structure of how the WOTI group carried out their walk, I want to see if it is possible to get from one place to another by only walking on the ‘natural environment’.

To make sure I get a good feel for the impact humans have made, I will conduct four walks that lead in four different directions. By repeating/iterating the process of walking around different areas and analysing the ‘natural environment’, I will be able to understand the relationship between social intersections, human activity and the ‘natural environment’.

If life had a soundtrack…


Today happened to be an atrocious day to go walking due to the periodic rain, but it was essential for me to make a start if I wanted to finish this assessment as intended. To make the most of this gloomy day, I decided to use Han Zimmer’s rather intense soundtrack to Christopher Nolan’s Inception, as I believed it suited the mood and would stimulate an intense experience out of something as mundane as walking. Through Zimmers provocative interludes and monstrous peaks, I hoped that his music would instil moments of shock and suspense throughout my walking journey.

The first thing I needed to do was predetermine where I would be walking to. I drew my route which kind of followed the borders of my estate. I also made sure my walk included area’s other then straight boring roads – such as an abandoned school that I use to hear ghost stories about as a kid.

I created my Inception playlist in shuffle mode, turned the volume up until I could no longer hear the outside world through my noise canceling headphones. I then pressed record on my H4N sound recorder, opened the front door and began my expedition.

My walking route. Colour code shows the change in song.

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