Swim Meet —

2004



Working with students from Grandview Community College, Des Moines. Swim Meet was a tribute to the 1968 film ‘The Swimmer’ directed by Frank Perry and starring Burt Lancaster. In the film Ned Merrill, drops by a pool party being held by old friends. They offer him a cocktail while nursing their own hangovers from the night before. As they share stories, Ned realises that there is a series of backyard swimming pools that could form a "river" back to his house. I wanted to conduct a dérive through the metropolitan area of Des Moines using a similar principle. Through a process of deep mapping we identified as many pools as we could in the Des Moines area and negotiated access to high school pools, one-lane pools, a pool in a Lodge with moose carvings all around it and a pool in a collector’s house. Over a series of day’s we met up and set about swimming together across the city.

Contested Fields Exhibition, Des Moines Art Centre curated by Chris Gilbert.