Holding (Qualities of Loss)
Holding (Qualities of Loss) is an intimate project. It explores the space between three bodies: Stonestreet’s own non-binary body, a litre block of ice and a slab of concrete.
Buttressed between the concrete facade of the overground and an abandoned yard slowly filling with knotweed Stonestreet steals time. They take a meander through temporalities: the inevitable dripping of melting ice, flecking of rusting chain, eroding concrete.
Stonestreet takes up space. It is precious, outdoors. This semi-domestic setting is secluded but not secret. Stonestreet performs in view of neighbours, they exist in each other's periphery. There are interruptions. The sound of a siren, the hum of the overground, a plane over head.
City time declares itself. It intrudes on the secluded setting. The concrete wall buffers and bolsters but it does not completely block.
The ice finds space in the crevices. The nooks of Stonestreet’s body, their collarbone, elbow crease, the small of their back. It leaks out into the edges of the wall, filling its imperfections, it spills over and meanders its way downwards.
Holding (Qualities of Loss) is a collection of moments of stress, frustration, joy, comfort, spasm, numbness and respite. It is an offering to be slow, a place where slowness can expand to the outer limits of its inception and erosion.
Image by kate stonestreet Holding (a walk, a flight)
Image by Tristan Albrecht
I can see Kate through my bedroom window as I sit in bed. Holding a heavy chain over their head they slowly, carefully run it through their fingers, sliding a cuboid of ice down the back of their body. They are performing on what we affectionately call ‘the ledge’, a 1 metre wide strip of raised land that runs down the back of next door’s garden, buttressed by the tall concrete wall of Dalston Junction overground tracks.
I have witnessed ten or more of these performances over the now eight-week lockdown, usually stumbling onto them by chance. Each time I find Kate holding a new block of ice, immersed in a slow process of cradling, suspending, licking, nuzzling, tracing the slow journey from ice to water.
Extract of A Response
by Es Morgan