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Sunday, May 11, 2008

people art technology

Yesterday I went with an old friend into the city.
First we caught the last hour before closing of an awesome exhibit at the MOMA:
Design and the Plastic Mind.
It was full of ideas about how to think about the technological changes confronting us, from a variety of ways to visualize metaphysical spaces and complex data sets to ways that we may be changing. There was a story-board progression about how smell could go the way of sound, with nose amplifiers and processors to better magnify pheremones in order to more easily pick out a compatible mate.
Next we took the train down to the financial district and went to the Winter Garden in the World Financial center, which is adjacent to the Twin Towers site. There, the Shua group had an installation piece and performance called Giant Space Detail. I'm not sure I've fully processed it and gotten the concept, but it has a lot to do with paying attention to a place and the lives of the people in it. The performance involved interaction with people using the building, and most of the performers themselves had been enlisted from workers in the building. There was also an interesting interaction with the Twin Towers "Ground Zero". At the large windows where people can look out over the site, the group installed television monitors showing video taken from around the area of day to day working situations together with headphones and accompanying audio. To me, it had a powerful grounding effect that is very counter to the using of 9-11 as a propaganda tool. It really focuses you on the more mundane reality of the place, rather than a "shock and awe" approach.


Anonymous said...

I'm one of the artists who worked on Giant Place Detail. Thanks for your comment. It's good to know that some folks get into the this idea the mundane facts of the "world financial center" inside the monumental scene at the balcony...

Boaz said...

Thank you for reading my blog Joshua.
Really enjoyed the experience, and will look out for what you guys do next.