Incorporation of Janue Austen, durational live performance, Spring 2018. Courtesy of the Leonard & Bina Ellen Art Gallery, Concordia University, Montreal.
Photo: Paul Litherland/Studio Lux.
In tracing facsimiles of Jane Austen's personal letters for four hours a day over the course of a month, I attempted to permanently erase my own handwriting and replace it with Austen’s instead. Given that graphologists use handwriting to infer a person's character, I wonder, will I also begin to take on traits of Jane Austen's character as my hand incorporates hers? What connections exist between the body that writes and the creative products of its labour, the body of writing? This durational performance was an invitation to be haunted and transformed, perhaps into a literary genius, through the rehearsal of another’s bodily gestures.