article about Lisa Park I have already discussed the collection of data as a
trait of the present times and Park’s visualization of this. However Park is
not the only artist concerned with this interest; the group exhibition Spending Quality Time With My Quantified
Self at Tent brings various artistic perspectives together. But where Park attends
the data collection itself, the artists at Tent are preoccupied with the body,
the self, within this omnipresent tendency.
The title of the exhibition is well chosen in this respect, it describes the
experience of the spectator. The quantified self stands for the increasingly
digital identity people have at present. With that being explained the whole
title is an invitation to consider this identity, think about it and question
it. And that is exactly what the exhibition brings about in the visitors.
is most palpable in the first work one comes across on entering the exhibition.
Attention Spa by Anni Puolakka and
Jenna Sutela is activated by a performance, surrounded by an audience the
participants can sit and contemplate. The artists attempt to find new
conditions for ‘togetherness, mutual dependency and networked relationships’.
Anni Puolakka & Jenna Sutela, Attention Spa, 2015. Photograph by Sander van Wettum.
work TLTRNW Amy Suo Wu examines the possible
consequences of digitalization to our language. We use abbreviated words and
symbols to express ourselves in texts, twitter etc. She relates this to stenography;
this writing method differed for each user and could therefore only be understood
by that same person. With the help of shorthand Wu translates modern internet
slang to facial expressions (close to emoticons). Then she incorporates these
expressions in her videos. For example in one of the videos a woman we could interpret
to be a newsreader pauses her speech every once in a while to draw her face in a
Amy Suo Wu, TLTRNW (Too Long to Read and Write), 2015. Photograph by Sander van Wettum.
Trakilović looks into the position of the human body in relation to increasing
digitalization. His Nothing Really
Matters consists of yoga mats and military instruction on how to handle in
case of emergency. He seems to assert that when you need saving, a digital connection
with someone will never rescue you; you remain dependent on another’s physical
Miloš Trakilović, Nothing Really Matters, 2015. Photograph by Sander van Wettum.
is concerned with that part of the human being that has not found its way in
the digital world; smell. In her contribution to the exhibition she presents
five small bottles with components of the smell of sweat. Sweat is produced by
movement and exercise, which is evidently the most monitored and quantified of
Maki Ueda, Deconstructing Body Odour (and Reconstructing), 2016. Photograph by author.
Walking around in the exhibition and afterwards
the spectator is really set to think. The show evokes questions like ‘What does
the generation of all these data mean to (my) identity?’ and ‘What does the
future hold for us when data collection is a growing tendency?’. It is
important to think about these questions and realize we are in control of at
least the part of it that concerns ourselves. Spending Quality Time With My Quantified Self 11 februari t/m 10 april 2016 Tent Witte de Withstraat 50 3012 BR Rotterdam www.tentrotterdam.nl