Design Experiment: Artistic Installation

Emotional Interaction Design for Knowledge Sharing

Experience Lab Seminar May 28

As part of the Experiences of Research – Making Knowledge Methodology Seminars May 28 12-2 pm 2020 Experience Lab will host an online seminar with Christian Jacquemin (artist’s name Yukao Nagemi) about the research project Emotional Interaction Design for Knowledge Sharing (EMIDEKS), which is supported by Roskilde University’s Centre for Interdisciplinary Research and Education in Circular Economy and Sustainability and is a transdisciplinary research collaboration with researchers and practitioners from computer science, art, anthropology, communication, performance and design.

The goal of the project Emotional Interaction Design for Knowledge Sharing is to perform design experiments based on knowledge generated by social scientists from ISE and with the purpose of understanding how scientific knowledge can be disseminated in ways that touch audiences in new ways.

The project experiments with an innovative methodology for experiencing knowledge through interactive installations. The project aims at sharing scientific knowledge about migration through artistic installations evoking emotional responses from viewers and exploring the impact of these installations on audiences.

The main case study is about processes of stigmatization, discrimination, inclusion and exclusion in migration contexts and incorporates innovative content including interviews with migrants and recordings of their heart-beats during interviews. Several interviews of migrants were made by project leader, Associate Professor Eric Hahonou and Visiting Scholar Fernando Palacios to serve as a basis for scientific analysis and the design of artistic installations.

Design Experiment 

Installation by Computer Scientist / Artist

A design experiment for knowledge sharing is carried out by Christian Jacquemin, who was a computer scientist at University Paris Saclay until 2017. Jacquemin practices as an artist under the name Yukao Nagemi and continues to engage in and promote art-science collaborations.

Touching Sensors and Flickering Light

Christian Jacquemin/Yukao Nagemi: My contribution to this project started with a fine analysis of the 1 hour interview of one of the participants (C.), an African-born electrician who migrated to Denmark in his 30s as a political refugee. His interview was video-recorded together with a capture of his heartbeats.

After a careful listening to his interview and discussions with the scientific partners in the project, I have designed an artistic installation based on C.’s words with the purpose of making the audience aware of what C.’s migration and integration process represent as a personal and social experience.

The installation consists of lamps connected to sensors that flicker in the dark while unfinished sentences are pronounced at each flicker. By touching sensors, the visitors can progressively light up the lamps and listen to complete sentences about his life from Africa to Denmark.

Through this installation and the experience of it by the visitors, I hope to make visitors aware of the importance of social connection to a migrant’s integration (through the use of sensors and their possible simultaneous activation), highlight C.’s strong personal drive in life (through the use of a visible red thread connecting the lamps, and the uttering of the sentences), together with his pragmatism and adaptability (by using recycled lamps). By touching sensors made of C.’s personal objects, visitors cancel light flickering and fragmentary talk to access his story through longer sentences, unraveling some of C.’s thoughts on his personal life, a complex mixture of a foreign past, a migration process, and his current state of life.

After briefly presenting the design of the installation, the main purpose of this seminar is to have an exchange wit the participants about several open questions, some of them were raised after discussions with Eric Hahonou due to his scientific experience of artistic mediation, and his personal knowledge of C. who is also a friend of him.

  • how can we evaluate the experience of the visitors inside the installation?
  • what are my aims as a designer about user’s experience? 
    what will they perceive from my staging of C.’s interview? I wish to suggest empathy by connecting the visitors’ interaction with C.’s expression, is it relevant? will their experience and their understanding be different from mine? am I trying to “force” visitors to experience the same emotional reaction as I had by listening to his interview? what is lost and what is gained from turning an interview into an installation?
  •  how could we use C.’s heartbeat recording during the interview?
  • does it make sense to involve C. in the design of the installation? will I loose some freedom by trying to respect his own feeling about my design? similarly, what kind of bias introduce my interactions with Eric Hahonou who knows C. personally?

About Christian Jacquemin / Yukao Nagemi

Christian Jacquemin was a computer scientist at University Paris Saclay until 2017. He was a teacher in computers graphics, and a researcher in virtual and augmented reality. He also collaborated regularly with artists, and promoted the art science festival Curiositas.

In parallel to his scientific work, Jacquemin developed his own artistic work on augmented performative drawing under the artist name Yukao Nagemi. He focuses on gestural response and the link between visual and sonic rendering.  It is through the collaboration with singer, musician and composer Lola Ajima, in the audiovisual duo Lola and Yukao Meet, that he developed a unique practice where the drawing performance is closely linked to the temporal dynamics of music.  He also collaborates with dancers, composers and musicians of contemporary music.  Digital technology is an instrument for the amplification and the expressivity of the graphical gesture which interweaves manual graphic traces and generative effects.

 Yukao Nagemi’s three main graphic expression techniques are ink drawings, digital drawing performances and, recently, vector videos.

Instagram @yukao.nagemi

Lola and Yukao Meet: