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Marathon Dancers

The sculpture is a floor piece which floats just above normal floor level to set it apart. A pair of worn out men’s and women’s shoes face each other as if their occupants are dancing together. Frenetic and impossible dance patterns are marked out on the dance floor. However the shoes are nailed down. This couple aren’t going anywhere, neither literally nor metaphorically.

It was inspired by the marathon dances of the1920s and 1930s in the USA. In these events couples competed for cash prizes and celebrity in dances that went on for days. The last couple standing would win. These brutal competitions were a way out for people suffering the century’s worst economic crisis. However for most it was a futile exercise that would not lead anywhere. The phenomenon was made famous by the 1969 film They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?.

Material: Shoes, nails, wood, tape

Size: 6 feet (2 metres) square


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