Elastic Spaces Symposium

The Elastic Spaces Third International Symposium 2017 was held here at Bath Spa University on October 11-13. I went to two sessions: Thursday's research presentations at Sion Hill and Friday's VR broadcast session at the Newton Park Campus.

  Screenshot  of  Elastic 3D Space  mindmap animation

Screenshot of Elastic 3D Space mindmap animation

I went to the symposium to expose myself to other ways of thinking about my research interest themes: home, place, dislocation, belonging, distance from loved ones, leaving people behind. I also wanted to see and hear how artists present their research - how are artists who are further down the path than I talking about their art? While I could only attend these two sessions, it turns out they were well worth the time and effort!

For my purposes, I found the presentations and subsequent conversations with Santiago Tavera (Virtual Narratives of Dislocation), Philippe Battikha (Halo), and Brigitta Zics (The Role of Experience in Art) to be the most compelling. In very different ways, they each introduced me to the idea of layering in an installation setting. That is, building up and playing with layers of elements like sound, video, and projected images to create an immersive experience. 

This is a key idea for several reasons at this point in my nascent research. First, I'm inspired by the idea of layers of meaning - and investigating ways to do that with the materials I use and how they are used. Layering—like a Google Map—comes to mind, offering different views of or perspectives on a place or location. Second, the use of other media is intriguing. A blend of analog and digital, material and ephemeral. And third, I love Santiago Tavera's notion of creating a sense of community and belonging by participating in his installations:

...ephemeral installation created as a collective; exploring what it means to belong in a specific place created via participants’ stories of belonging and dislocation.
— Santiago Tavera, lecture comments, Elastic Spaces 12 Oct. 2017

My brain is buzzing with ideas.