It is impossible to relaunch ‘Thebowernest’ without first explaining my disappearance for the past 4 months.
In the simplest of terms, my absence comes down to essentially one word – GEYSER. This word pretty much describes what was a dramatic event and a metaphor for 2012. Leading up to it, GEYSER was; an obsession, a passion and a project, that seemed to last for eternity.
I am ecstatic, however, to say it all resulted in a really memorable Opening Night and 2 day exhibition. Like a real life GEYSER, the build up was huge, the event exceeded all expectations and then life receded back to normal. Consequently I took a humongous exhale and the ‘Thebowernest’ reverted into a some what dormant existence.
All explanations aside, I am reinvigorated for 2013. First post for the year and I am extremely excited to début to you, GEYSER.
GEYSER was a collaborative installation designed by myself and Ella Leoncio. Robert Bravington completed our team with his expert knowledge of sonic composition, electronics and basically his do-it-yourself know how. It was all made physically possible with the help from our sponsors Chamberlain Javens Architects, Manysquaremetres/MsqmPresents and Mance Lighting Design.
To begin with, this was the Synopsis we set for the project:
Thermal bathing awakens an awareness of our bodies in space. Shifts in temperature, feelings of weightlessness and the experience of full body immersion, activate our senses beyond the everyday.In the absence of water, GEYSER explores the potential for architecture to create environments of sensory bathing. How can sound, light, form and texture heighten our bodies’ response to space?
We tested this synopsis via three distinct areas or what we liked to call temperatures:
- The MAIN ROOM (to which the PIXEL ROOM and HEXAGON ROOM where positioned within) was the neutral zone; calm, tactile and inviting. A long corridor of thousands and thousands of woolen strands allowed for large scale immersion whilst still encouraging ease of movement .
- The HEXAGON ROOM was designed to appear initially as a warm and embracing cocoon yet with time became rather unpleasant. The use of Ultrasonic audio and confined headspace (also with suspended woolen strand ceiling) all contributed to the sensory experience.
- The PIXEL ROOM which was encouraged to be experienced laying down, evoked a sense of intense euphoria. An elasticated and elevated floor gave the feeling of weightlessness whilst sparkling crystal reflections, warm lighting and heat absorbing materials were teamed with a sensor driven ‘tingling’ audio to channel the senses into the space.
Cohesion and a sense of connection across the rooms was achieved through repetitive materiality (wool, reflective film and white mesh) The bleeding of sound and volume joined the spaces together but allowed for points of difference. Below is a recording taken from GEYSER showcasing the bleed between Robert’s bass heavy MAIN ROOM and the sensor triggered PIXEL ROOM ‘tingling’ (@ 2:44 sec) .
Whilst there is so much more I could describe I will finish up this first post with some of my favourite GEYSER Opening Night images (taken from our instagram hashtag #geyserproject). They are pixalated, grainy and some quite over exposed but what they lack in megapixels they make up for in playfulness and ‘immersion’.
What was so magical about the hashtag was that it allowed for people to interact with each other (including complete strangers) in real time. Shooting and uploading, liking and commenting without physically leaving the event. Two people shooting the same area were comparing and introducing. Most of all, people were becoming instinctively aware of their bodies and the bodies around them in space and in time. What a fantastic insight into, and momento of, people’s interactions and interpretations of our art.
A massive thank you to those who participated and thank you specifically to; Glen and Stephen from Chamberlain Javens Architects, Cassie, Bridget and Jules from Manysquaremetres, Dean and Kim from Mance and our amazing photographers Caitlin Muscat and Tim Casten. We could not have achieved all that we did without every one of you.