Human Tolerance Range (HTR)

Performance, object and public action.


One of the first socio-cultural differences I perceived after start to live in the Netherlands, was the higher personal distance people takes in relation to my country.

As a "social experiment" the performer encroach on the personal space of people in a specific context within the public space. This work try to proof that each person has a different kind of personal distance according to cultural issues.

The measurement is done with a wireless device and by using a distance sensor system, placed in a white suit. The device indicates the personal distance through different kind of sound repetitions, like longer or shorter 'beep' and a numeric display according to the range.

In this way the personal distance between the performer and the other is 'translated' in data (1.4 m, 0.5m,1.9m, 0.3m) connected to a specific place and time. Later the data is written in the white suit as a H.T.R.

The Human Tolerance Range (H.T.R.) is the range of proximity that makes people react -running, scared, laughing, avoiding, hugging- according to their own nurture and culture, when the performer invades their comfort zone.


Video documentation 2'27''

Click on the image 



“Entering somebody's personal space is normally an indication of familiarity and at times of intimacy. However, in modern society, especially in crowded urban communities, it is at times difficult to maintain personal space, for example, in a crowded train, elevatoror street. Many people find such physical proximity to be psychologically disturbing and uncomfortable, though it is accepted as a fact of modern life. In an impersonal crowded situation, eye contact tends to be avoided” E. HALL