Public Intimacies: Water Work in Play
This essay emerges out of water. It follows the thoughts of four disability culture scholars and artists who went swimming together and reflected on artful methods of public somatic presence. The writing developed from Petra Kuppers’ initial queercrip aqua-fitness research, and from a series of communal post-swim free-writes in which the group meditated on boundaries and contiguity, on contagious laughter and demonstrative peace. The team conceptualized their self-care in a range of different ways: as political, as queered women’s labour, as deeply personal, and as forcefully communal. Through shared swimming, conversation, and writing, they became conscious of the flows and undertows of somatic practice.