Answering Machines – Models in collaboration with Sam Wellin
Materials and Dimensions Paper, thread, steel 12"H x 20"W x 12" D
This model was submitted to Japan’s Echigo Tsumari Triennial competition in collaboration with Sam Wellin. Although it was not chosen, there are aspects of it that I have used in my work since that time. The proposal involved an interactive piece that invited viewers to enter a theatrically lit room and observe the numbers on each object. After a while, they would realize that these are phone numbers and they’d try placing a call. The objects would be built to receive calls that turned on motion and sound sensors in their innards. Calling the object’s number would activate a response tailored to its ideal sound and motion action. We were interested in a form of connection or empathy that ensues when an object responds to the viewer’s engagement with it.