EXCHANGE RATE : 2008 header image 3

Melissa Wyman

Performance Interpretation

Melissa Wyman interpreted Vincent Ramos’ direction in public locations in downtown Seoul, South Korea.
(Monday, Oct. 13, 2pm Seoul time, Sunday, Oct. 12 at 10pm PCT in the USA)

I decided to incorporate the performance into a language exchange with a Korean artist, Yang Youn Hwa. With vocabulary necessary, she instructed me to measure the distance between me and other people in the Hongdae area in Seoul, South Korea. I used chalk to define my position in relation to others who, for the most part, didn’t stand still long enough for me to complete the measurement. Through subsequent discussions with Youn Hwa and other participants the meaning of the piece was derived through the impossibility of defining a static position in a moving structure. The first slide includes some of the photos she took. The second slide includes some of the photos I took.

More photos can be seen on Flicker.

Performance Directions

The Ransom Letter (rhetoric)

Take a hostage
Listen to a speech by either of the U.S. presidential candidates
Write down every 3rd word you hear until you fill a page
With these words only, create a ransom letter
Give this letter to a caring family member(s) or friend(s) of the hostage
They must fulfill the requests of the ransom to the best of their ability
Once the demands are met, you may “free” your hostage
This exchange must take place in a public space


Melissa Wyman is a social practitioner and fight therapist. She creates physical spaces for processing interpersonal conflicts while exploring the boundaries between play and aggression. She has lived and worked in Italy, Japan, New Zealand, the US, and South Korea.