Like other projects in the Public Address Systems category, Porch Sitting explores alternative models for public conversations. The project takes seriously the idea that dialogue can happen side-by-side, rather than face-to-face with an expert. Porch Sitting creates an open-ended forum supported by clear structures that draw on vernacular forms of exchange. The conversation space becomes a ‘household’ divided into two areas: the Kitchen and the Porch. In the Kitchen, you can get drinks, have a chat, have a bite to eat. There are no rules for behaviour. There is no need to leave the Kitchen, if that’s where you’re most comfortable. On the Porch, conversation is sustained by a few simple rules. It is a space to sit, think, dream or get involved in the ongoing conversation. It is ok if conversation goes quiet, or if it spills out into raucousness or song.
A few openers help ease you into conversation:
I wonder whatever happened to….
Who do you think that is….
I have a feelin’ it’s going to….
Or just about any phrase that begins:
I imagine…I wonder…I think…I feel…
Porch Sitting was initiated at LaMaMa Experimental Theatre in New York on New Year’s Eve of 2012/13.