Interactive/ Installation Art

Art becomes interactive when audience participation is an integral part of the artwork (Edmonds, 2011). Unlike the traditional system of viewing art, where there was a barrier between the audience and the static work, art has become opened to interaction, adding a dimension to the aesthetic endeavour. What matters most in Interactive art is the audience’s behavioural response with the piece.

A category of art that correlates to interactive art is Installations. Installation art involves the configuration of objects within a space that allows the audience to interact and view the work from multiple points of view.  It is very fascinating how a simple gallery space can also challenge a person’s perceptions through illusions as the human mind can be easily tricked. Illusions are misperceptions that are perceived and are based on specific stimulus received under certain conditions as our minds tend to make assumptions about the world.

Green House – Kyung Woo Han

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In the Green House (2009), the Korean artist has created an illusion of a room half-filled with water. This was done with paint and the creation of distorted and symmetrical furniture, suspended using wire. This allows the human eye to see furniture floating on water as the mirrored half of the furniture makes it seem like they are half drowned in water. Viewers misinterpret the room due to the usual observations their eyes take in from daily life, making an assumption. The things we see and know are not always right as we all perceive things with a slightly different perspective. Han states ‘Two different facts can be looked the same’.

Geometric Rooms – Esther Stocker

Esther Stocker’s Geometric Rooms consist of installations full of geometric and linear forms that are designed to disorient viewers and change their perception of space. The black-and-white rooms create invading, two-dimensional worlds. Using wood, foam and acrylic, she creates a dramatic illusion of depth that provokes the uncertainties in the viewers as their sense of control is doubt when interacting within the space. With the construction of each piece in strange compositions, the physical space is transformed due to the result of the unusual linear patterns and planes. The use of black and white only also portrays a flat dimension as the audience’s mind will automatically assume a two-dimensional space. Thus, showing how the human eyes and mind works on a daily basis as our surroundings shape the way we think.

The Infinity Room – Yayoi Kusama

Within the Infinity Mirrored Room, Yayoi Kusama created a series of mirrors positioned on the walls and ceilings with the floor featuring a shallow pool of water in such a way as to create the illusion of infinity. Decorated with a lot of hanging LED lights, they flash on and off in different colour configurations. These lights are reflected endlessly in the mirrors, giving viewers the experiences of being in an apparently endless space that is only interrupted by light within the darkness. Thus, the Japanese artist has used daily items such as mirrors to create a different perception on space. Since the human mind thinks simply of what the eyes see, illusions are easily created.

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Author: z5109839_CP

Design student from UNSW Arts & Design

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