For the past few years, I’ve been thinking deeply about the relationships between participating in an art installation and participating in a scientific research study. The former, specifically designed to create an experience for the visitor, the latter, designed to study the human condition by collecting participant data. Art offers you something now, and science asks for your support while offering to the public later in time, in the form of research papers, presentations, or public talks. In many ways, aspects of participation overlap: you are led into another world, designed by researcher or artist. I remember the experience of walking into a sound-proof booth as a research participant as an incredibly powerful experience. If only I had been given the space or opportunity to pause and appreciate the effect it had on my body (complete silence, the exploding heartbeat).
Can we join these two experiences? Are we able to build an installation that is capable of collecting scientifically viable data? Would this installation explore the scientific topic that data is being collected for? Is it possible to provide an experience and collect data at the same time? In sequence? In two adjacent rooms?
This is a call for ideas, essays, art installations, sketches, photographs, research materials – anything that can help us explore these questions further. I am looking for both practical ideas (e.g. eye tracking procedure while in a virtual world created by artists) as well as concept ideas, exploring the limits of what is possible. The goal is for these to fit with research designs on the human condition generally, not just on how humans react to art. Even if you have an idea for just part of the puzzle, I would love to hear it.
I hope to work closely with anyone who wants to talk through ideas, so please contact me at hello [at] nellymatorina.com.
Collected submissions will be put into a book and/or art installation.
Please share widely with anyone who might be interested!