We hold while held, 2022
Video projection, handmade projection mount, petri dish, proximity sensor
We hold while held is an interactive installation driven by the autonomy of the participant and their willingness to assume the role of performer. The interactive nature of the piece comes about through the inclusion of an Arduino proximity sensor, a petri dish containing water, projection, and reactive visuals made in the program Touch Designer. When the work is unactivated, the video within the projected petri dish remains ambiguous and amorphous. Upon opting to engage with the physical petri dish the proximity sensor is triggered, enacting a change in the video projection. The video then transforms into clear footage of tardigrades undergoing hydration and dehydration, as the participant holds the water, held by the petri dish within the light of the projected petri dish.
We hold while held aims to reveal the porous borders between ourselves and the many lives we live in relationship to. The dual nature of the two petri dishes allows viewers to encounter the tardigrades after having placed themselves under observation and allowing themselves to be enveloped by the projected petri dish. By using tardigrades as a symbol as well as a material, I intended to convey that with every action we never operate alone—regardless of the emphasis of individualism in our society. By attending to tardigrades and other non-human creatures we may learn from their ability to react to and withstand extreme conditions while also being reminded of our own fragility in the midst of mass ecological change. I ask that participants consider their perpetual relationships to these tardigrades in hopes of de centering human systems and becoming more aware of our often unconscious participation in our larger shared system.
Audio: "Ambient Tape Synth" from LogicMoon on FreeSound.org

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