Performance

Make your mark

Make your mark in pictures and drawings inspired by body movements and sound

The idea

Kids doing the Make your mark activity at Tate Modern

© Tate

This activity is inspired by the work of artist Bruce Nauman. He works in a variety of ways including sculpture, video, photography, neon, drawing and performance.

For his work Raw Materials he created a collage of sound using 22 audio files. The sound, played from speakers placed along the length of the huge Turbine Hall in Tate Modern, affected how people moved through the space as they listened and responded to the sound.

The plan

Bruce Nauman Dance or Exercise on the Perimeter of a Square (Square Dance) 1967–8 (still

Bruce Nauman
Dance or Exercise on the Perimeter of a Square (Square Dance) 1967–8 (still)
© Bruce Nauman

Teenagers doing the Making your Mark activity

Making your Mark activity at Tate Modern © Tate

Work with a partner to create drawings and pictures in two ways by listening to music or sounds.

One person will make pictures through body movement which show how the music/sound makes them feel. The other will draw the body movements they see on paper in a way that shows how the movements make them feel.

This activity was invented by Ben and Maya, Raw Canvas team members, and inspired by Bruce Nauman.

What you need

Kid wearing headphones doing the Making your Mark activity at Tate Modern

© Tate

  • A partner
  • Music or sounds on CD or radio
  • Headphones to block out sound
  • Paper and pencils

Step 1

Teenagers doing the Making your Mark activity at Tate Modern

© Tate

Teenagers doing the Making your Mark activity at Tate Modern

© Tate

Decide who will dance (Person A) and who will draw (Person B) first.

  • Person B puts on headphones to block out the music or sounds being played. Person A acts out the way the music/sounds makes him/her feel by either dancing, simply moving about or even miming.
  • Person B watches and draws the movements on paper, making a map of Person A's actions. When you are watching and drawing your partner's movements what kind of marks can you use to show the movements and how they make you feel? Think of lines, curves, dots etc.
  • The partners change over and repeat the process so Person A becomes Person B and vice versa.

Step 2

Kids doing the Making your Mark activity at Tate Modern

© Tate

What words describe the kind of movements and drawings the sounds have inspired you to make? Share your motion drawings with each other and talk about:

  • How the music made you feel when you were dancing.
  • How watching your partner's movement made you feel when you were watching.
  • How the lines drawn describe the movements made in the dance.

Step 3

Kid playing outside

Try this activity outside and respond to natural or man-made sounds instead.

How different are your body movement pictures and drawings?

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