Honi Ryan’s ongoing international projects, such as her Silent Dinner Parties and her series of Mindful Encounters, are examples of a social practice that locates the site of her work in the space between people, crafting human relationships as sculptural form and approaching mindfulness as creative practice. Her performative research responds to the dwindling necessity of human to human encounters, for much of the established functions of communication are now completed digitally. Ryan therefore opens up her ‘real-space’ exchanges for experimentation and play. Performance art is her arena for developing life by articulating ideas out loud and turning them into actions, enacting possible futures. Although Ryan works collaboratively with people from many walks of life and mounts her actions in different countries around the world, the same set of performative guidelines are implemented everywhere. For Ryan, this allows cultural differences to emerge while revealing a base and unifying humanity. Mindful techniques are consciously placed within her social exchanges because of their intrinsic relationship to peace propagation, creating situations that nurture empathy and foster awareness.
Image credit: Honi Ryan and Caara Fritz-Hunter, ‘Mindful Encounters: The Passage Of Water’. Ecological Pilgrimage, video still, California, 2014.