Class was great!
Through discussion, Tom and the class helped me develop the installation and get it to a potentially cool place.
The set is still a living room. There is one audience member at a time. They enter the room. There is a TV, an iPod dock loaded with music, a computer on the coffee table, and a smart phone on the table next to the couch. The audience member has a minute to get themselves situated, perhaps put on some music or a movie, and then the text alert goes off. From there, the audience member takes part in a performance via text message and social media. They talk to a character. There is a general storyline for the character, but the audience member has the ability to effect the direction and outcome of the interaction. They become a true spect-actor, in that thy take a role in co-creating the performance. This does a couple of cool things.
First, it challenges the notion of context. Both context in interpersonal communication that is mediated by a digital barrier, and context in the definition and creation of art.
In time specific sessions, the audience member can experience and take part in a performance that hopefully elicits genuine reactions, unconsciously generated, leading to an authentic interaction. It’s a happening of sorts, though more curated than Kaprow would like.
Tom liked the concept so much he suggested it could be a creative dissertation project, and I agree. This is an example of how great the class is, especially in the way Tom structured it. He’s brought us along, putting the pieces out there and letting us slowly put them together, which is starting to reveal a real idea of what our individual drives and interests in art are, which in turn can inform the kind of projects we take one.
I really like it. This was a great week. Unfortunately, it’s not the kind of thing that’s easy to document, I feel. I can write about it, but there are no fun pictures to take or screenshots to post because these are all concepts right now.
Next week, we put it together into an actual physical presentation. I’ve gotta figure out how to turn a space in the UTD Art Barn into a living room environment.
My specific assignment is to create a Facebook profile for one of my characters (we decided it’d be cool to have multiple characters) and present that in a setting that can somewhat recreate the idea. We’ll see how it goes…