Date of Award
Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA)
In our current society, there is a constant endeavor to reconcile our differences while respecting our individuality. Since the 1990s, a large amount of artworks begin focusing on human relationships. In this essay, I discuss the question: how can interactive artworks create common ground between people while respecting their individual identity? Through creating a sequence of interactive artworks, I determine the three factors that are necessary for connecting people of different backgrounds—mutual vulnerability, anonymity, and the leveling of power dynamics. Mutual vulnerability entails an interaction where two people reveal themselves to each other, and connect through this reciprocal action. Anonymity involves having people reveal only single aspects of their body to avoid pigeonholing, and encourage them to focus on feeling the humanistic presence of each other. Leveling of power dynamics regulates this process further by ensuring the interactions are initiated by both people simultaneously, so neither person can initiate nor feel obligated to respond. These constraints on an interaction create situations where people, regardless of their identities, can quickly connect and build a sense of mutual fondness and respect. In conclusion, I discuss the ethics of an artist’s control over an interpersonal interaction, and how my works perpetuates the importance of individuality.
Shieh, Daniel, "Changing Human Relationships Through Interactive Art" (2016). Bachelor of Fine Arts Senior Papers. 2.