In the work Gallery of Faces 2.0, which is also one part of the collaboration work with Lexi Sun and Micheal Cheung, we attempt to construct a digital gallery space with audiences’ unconscious participation, with the context of heterotopia and time duration.
The whole work combines performance and interactive installation, and the length of the performance is five minutes. Before the performance starts, all of the audience needs to be waiting outside the gallery space. A gatekeeper stands outside and lets the audience wait in a queue. A face-detecting camera is located beside the gatekeeper, and the camera faces the queueing people. Inside the door, the performance artist faces a monitor, which displays a series of real-time mind wave signals coming from the sensors fixed on the head of the gatekeeper.
When the performance begins, the performance artist watches the signals on the monitor. At the same time, the gatekeeper watches the first audience members in the queue. The performance and the gatekeeper can communicate with each other through a pair of walky-talkies. During the performance process, only the performance artist is eligible to decide who can come in and who should stay outside the door.
The camera outside starts to work as long as the performance begins. The camera continuously detects and captures the audience members’ faces and then projects those face images in order on a white wall inside the gallery space. Before the performance begins, the image projected on the wall is blank and white. During the processing of the performance, the audiences’ face images are projected on the wall simultaneously, and the number of faces will keep increasing as long as the audience members are entering the exhibition area in order. After the five-minute performance, the camera will keep working to capture the passengers’ faces and update the face images on the wall.
As a result, in the work, Gallery of Faces 2.0, one digital gallery space is automatically constructed in the performance process with the help of audiences’ unconscious participation.