Black Box Interactions with David Wilson Clarke


Black box interactions, an experimental performance using ubiquitous technology and architectural spaces of transition.

Images from an exploratory photo shoot with David Wilson Clarke;

I step into the new contained architectural space; I’m not familiar with it. I walk in; I keep walking in – tracing the same spot. I use my phone to engage with social media –to pick up emails and sometimes to take calls and read texts. As I do this repeatedly moving in and making small entrances to the space, I become tacitly aware of the tectonics of the environment. The feel of the wallpaper, the ridges of a wall, I build up through my body a memory of the space whilst continually complying with the distraction of the phone. I find resting points, anchoring points. I use the edge of a wall to afford acoustic privacy. I use the corner of a ledge to rest. My body learns, I repeat the gestures until I can use the space to support me physically. The performance emerges from the gestures I become most familiar with.

The piece is drawn from Michael Polanyi who when describing tacit knowing suggests that “we can know more than we can tell.” (Polanyi, 1966, p. 4) Polanyi describes the manner in which we often find it difficult to articulate what we know due to our knowledge being formed in relation with context, describing an on-going synthesis between what is known and praxis or doing (Polanyi, 1966). We infer things from our environment often without questioning them; my body becomes attuned to a space with the distraction of the technology interaction.

Polanyi, M., 1966. the Tacit dimension. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.img_c4_64772-ed1img_c4_64761-ed1img_c4_64705-ed1img_c4_64708-ed1img_c4_64756-ed1img_c4_64704-ed1img_c4_64697-ed1

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