interaction + feedback – meeting 1, May

The most important thing that I took away from the meeting with Simon last Wednesday was to always go back to what I had written. Especially my abstract and continually re-read the words I had chosen to express, ‘how I was going to express’ the aesthetic of the work.
For example, the very first paragraph of my Abstract:
This paper discusses the digital representation of kumite (or sparring) within the martial art of karate through a performative, interactive installation work. The work addresses the poetic narrative of pressure and control within kumite. It will create a feedback system that will visually and sonically illustrate in real-time, the unseen, dysfunctional relationship of two performers during kumite. By doing so, the work aims to enlighten audiences about the subtleties of combative interaction.

Here are some thoughts of how to develop an appropriate aesthetic style…

–> think about mapping the rate of change instead of the instances of change. That is, thinking about the performers in relation to on another and mapping the differences in their rates of change in their rhythms or their heartrates.

–> imagine the data as waves of sound

–> the visual and audio system as an organism being fed by the two bodies, spawning or producing “something”
–> To convey the idea of “the subtleties of combative interaction”, the data needs to be treated in an equally subtle and meaningful way. That is, an physical event like punching, cannot simply trigger a response in the system nor could the simply a forward action.

The trigger for change in the system must come when there is an equilibrium or an “understanding” between the two performers. For example, when their heart rates match, the system could then respond in some way to illustrate the accordance of the players. Similarly, when they are moving to the same rhythm (it could be said they are ‘in sync’ with one another) – and this could be another trigger within the programming.
In a way, the system exploits the moments of accordance and contrasts them to moments of discordance….
[i’ll expand on this more later]

–> think about how to display the work – keeping in mind the projection, and the idea of growth from the data sources – like a gene mutating from two parents.

–> From “Materializing new media – embodiment in information aesthetics, by Anna Munster)
“In this “force-field” the binary pairs that have populated our understanding of digital culture and new media technologies – physicality and virtuality, analogue and discrete states, real and hyperreal – can be seen to impinge upon each other rather than be mutually exclusive. The effect of these areas’ convergence and divergence is to produce ever-new and consistently mutating outcomes.”

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