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CREATEC Weekly Seminar Series - Dr Vahri McKenzie

Wednesday, 21 September 2016


Presenter: Dr Vahri McKenzie

Title: Only the Envelope: An artistic exercise in data retention

Biography: Vahri McKenzie is a Senior Lecturer in the interdisciplinary Arts Program at Edith Cowan University (South West). She engages in practice-led research, and publishes traditional research with a creative arts focus, with a particular interest in interdisciplinary creative arts pedagogy and research methodologies. Recent projects include Underscore Alchemy (2013-6), which shows how creative artists in a variety of disciplines benefit from a practice that focuses on somatic awareness, improvisation and collaboration. Vahri’s Early Career Researcher study of WA choreographers explores how complex dance vocabularies challenge the view of human memory as a storehouse of linguistic propositions, and informs new perspectives on the links between memory, music and movement. Results will appear this year in the edited collection Performing the Remembered Present: the Cognition of Memory in Dance, Theatre, and Music, part of Methuen’s “Performance and Science: Interdisciplinary Dialogues series”. Recent performance works include Lysistrata for Bunbury Regional Entertainment Centre, which applies Underscore Alchemy research to a performance outcome.

Abstract: Only the Envelope: An artistic exercise in data retention combines research methodologies to investigate our complicity in sharing personal information in the public sphere. The practice-led stage of the project was a work of live art (Bunbury Regional Art Galleries, March-April 2016) that offered visitors the intimate experience of viewing an original film whilst being monitored by a ‘laboratory technician’ who invited viewers to watch the film while wearing eye-tracking glasses. This generated hard data that offers information about where we look, who we look at and how long we look. Further, the live art installation staged encounters that dramatised the act of looking, generating ‘deep data’ narratives that offer another way of investigating the act of sharing personal data. These modes of enquiry combine to offer insights in two directions, where one addresses the role of the document in live art, and the other addresses the psycho-social dimensions of artistic interventions, particularly in the applications of eye-tracking technologies.

Event details

Date: Wednesday, 28 September 2016
Time: 12.30pm - 1.30pm
Venue: ECU Mount Lawley Campus, Building 3, Room 3.251
Cost: Free
Lunch will be provided.


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