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Bartlett School of Architecture, UCL

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The variation of memory

The variation of memory

This project was started with one question about existence.

“Can people feel the self through the everyday object or natural medium in physical space?”

As a process of answering this question, this project is to experiment with experiences about the concept of self-presence in real space by using the method of ‘installation’.

Self-presence means feeling the self through objects without consciousness of the environment in a mediated environment. In the concept of self-presence, it is known that there might be three levels of self-presence. These levels consist of proto self-presence, core self-presence and extended self-presence. Proto self-presence is related to the representation of body schema. Core self-presence refers to the emotion provoked from the interaction between the self and the other(objects or people). And extended self-presence is related to creating a personal identity based on memory or past experiences.

The experiments follow the framework of self-presence mentioned above. Based on these layers, the experiences refer to self-reflection, interactivity, memory, overlaps, and identity. It could be the basis for uncanny or poetic experiences which are pursued in the experiments. These experiences are explored by focusing on temporality rather than static scenes or objects. The time is not absolute and objective, but a transparent continuum with infinite change, movement, and creation. It is fluid and constantly becoming something else, having new movements and images in response to changes in perception, and opening up infinite possibilities. In this way, time can play the role of the essence throughout the whole process of exploring experiments.

The practical process of experiments is based on body movements and perception. Starting from the movement of the body, this experiments adapting a method ‘installation’ have an interactive system that could lead people to change the perception through mental activity such as self-recognition, memory, and perception of identity depending on body movements and time. The experiments focus on the pursuit of a transition of perception based on the variation of the self over time rather than the representation of the self through light and sound.

Meanwhile, light and sound are dealt with as a significant element in these experiments. In experiments, movements of the body are translated into the light and the sound in a vague way. Since it activates the actions of shapes through the infinite movements or continuous relationships of time and space, if it could be perceived as the representation of the self and memory, there could be a potential for exploring the relationships over time between the self and object in space. This experiments does not focus on the exploration of the nature of light or sound but considers them as a natural medium for the projection of the existence of the self which can affect each other with space and time. In other words, these experiments include not only the light and the sound through visual or acoustic phenomena but also the invisible perception that acts as an imaginary pathway beyond the visible or the audible.