MIND BODY PHONE

     Mind Body Phone consists of video and installation works, presented in a darkened gallery space, which emit light through projection and LED light installations. This work offers quiet spaces in which viewers encounter screens and images of technology in unexpected ways.

 

     Societies often instrumentalise technologies to accomplish tasks quickly and effectively, and overlook their forms and characteristics (outside of the pragmatic) in the process. The history of one such technology — artificial light — goes back several millennia through religious, scientific, commercial and cultural practices; the ways that such forms of light shape both viewers and what is being viewed is worth considering. Mind Body Phone investigates these forms of viewership in a contemporary and art historical context, with regard for the physical body and the mind. 

 

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     This body of work stemmed from my interest in comparing two kinds of embodied practices: the physical postures and meditative exercises present in all main schools of yoga and several religions; and the rise of social media and digital devices. Both practices have tangible effects on the mind and body, but where the first is undertaken to improve health and well-being, the second acts to improve productivity and connectivity, and to provide entertainment. Both practices involve specific gestures and physical positions, both involve new qualities and forms of light, and both affect mental awareness, either heightening or lessening it. These two practices are rarely examined together for their similarities, especially the ways that both draw upon forms of ritual and fetishization. I’m particularly interested in the inadvertently ritualistic aspects of daily practices with technology, and how these contrast with the deliberate ritual of traditional meditative practices. 

 

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​© 2012 - 2020 by Emilie St-Hilaire

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