It Burns

video documentation
at a performance event of the Jointissue Collaborative group in Boston on November 18, 2008

It Burns from Lenka Chludova on Vimeo.

this piece is a question:

How long do we think we can maintain our humanness in this rushed and anxious contemporary world?

The aim of the action is to burn as many matches as fast as possible without burning myself. I take as deep breath as possible, clip my nose shut with a clothes pin and take as much water into my mouth as I fit. I can put out each match only by spitting water on it.
Only in the instance of spitting water can i breathe in again before i clip my nose shut again. Since this is only a short moment i manage to take in only little air and am gradually deprived of oxygen.
At the same time i have less and less water for each consecutive match, until finally i have no water to put out the match with and it burns me.
The sound of the match is amplified through a microphone hidden in the match box and played back with a delay over it.