The Black Box Experiment, 2018  Black Box Experiment, live digital making as performance, Experimenta Social for Melbourne Art Week, Testing Grounds 3 August 2018


Step inside the Black Box and be transported to a virtual mirror world. In the space of mere minutes, you will be scanned and rendered as a 3D model, then placed into a digital version of the Testing Grounds site. Here you may encounter magnificent animated toys inhabiting the space as the sky mutates through a deep dream of algorithmic horizons.

In tech terminology, a black box is a closed unit that is simply described in terms of its input and output but the inner workings are too complex to describe. In sociology, opening the ‘black box’ is the practice of examining closed complex social systems. In theatre, a black box is a simple unadorned performance space. In this project, the artist collective will consider the black box from all these perspectives in a ‘making as performance’ experiment for Experimenta Social at Testing Grounds, as part of Melbourne Art Week.

The labour of digital making is usually a hidden behind the shiny veneer of a finished resolved product. In the Black Box project, the artist collective explore the notion of digital making as a public process. Visitors are invited to literally enter into the black box and become folded into the complex labor of digital making. Watch as the artists work to insert you into the virtual Testing Grounds site in real-time. Let’s crack open the black box! is a collective of Melbourne-based queer-identifying new media artists engaged in exploring notions of #queertech creative practices. Over the last two years they have presented more than sixty screen-based digital media artworks by queer artists from around the globe at Testing Grounds, RMIT Spare Room Gallery, & ACMI. For Experimenta Social, will test and extend a speculative work begun as Midsumma artists-in-residence at Testing Grounds in January.

Artists involved in the Black Box project are Megan Beckwith, Alison Bennett, Travis Cox, Xanthe Dobbie, & J Rosenbaum.



About Alison Bennett

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