The Wave @ urSenses, Färgfabriken, Stockholm 20 sept - 30 nov 2014
For the group show urSenses at Färgfabriken, B&B – in collaboration with Elisabeth Norebäck and Lotten Jungmar from the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm – have developed a moving sculpture that is a direct physical extension of the tentacles of the exhibition. The Wave is a tactile sculpture that the visitors can sit or lie on. Throughout the oblong, sweeping shape flows a wave movement that gives you a sense of being on a living creature or out at sea. Research has shown that very small children do not always differentiate between a robot and a living being. For example, if a robotic bunny is harmed before the eyes of a small child, it can generate the same emotional reactions as if a living creature were being abused. Similar reactions have been registered in elderly people, often with dementia conditions, who became more relaxed after stroking a robotic seal. The question is not whether machines, or art itself, should replace human contact and touch, but how we can develop these complements into interesting objects and situations.
Thus, Bigert & Bergström’s “The Wave” becomes a platform in which visitors can physically communicate with the artwork. Because what is communication, if not waves passing through various media? Air, water and soil, all of these materials can transport waves. Even our own nerve impulses, when we stroke another’s skin or pat a dog, can be classified as wave shapes or oscillations in an electric field. For the very smallest children, this tactile communication is crucial. Because, while an octopus can grow a new tentacle if one is cut off, a child who receives no tactile input in the earliest days of life will have much more difficulty re-growing the “feelers” that have atrophied.
Other participating artists are: Candice Breitz, Nina Katchadourian, Kevin Schmidt, Ebba Matz, Lars Siltberg, Goran Kajfes & David Österberg, Lundahl & Seitl, Simon Heijdens