It's not what you do it's the way that you do it

This investigation aims to answer the following questions.

  • How can re-presentation of non-verbal communication manifest as art?
  • What are artistic equivalents of empathy and rapport?
  • How can the working methods used in medical practice influence the production of art?

The research builds upon my previous work, which examined the non-verbal communication of prominent politicians/celebrities during some of their public speeches.

In an effort to examine my research questions, I am conducting a "Series of unfortunate (art) events" that focus on the re-presentation of non-verbal communication that takes place when people are doing "normal" things such as talking, waiting, walking, socializing and eating: whether alone or in groups. I concentrate on movements, intonation of speech, non-verbal utterances, sounds of movements, laughter and peoples own experience of empathy/rapport.

Overarching the research I use medical working methods to inform my artistic practice. This involves the appropriation of processes that take place within medical consultations, medical education and appraisal of doctors, using them as a model for both making and critiquing my work. Examples of these medical processes include making an appointment, speaking to a receptionist, waiting, history taking, examination, investigations, use of templates and computer technology and annual appraisals.

The first events in this research project include:

  • ''The Great Forced LOLathon'' 2013: a 26.2-minute marathon of people laughing out loud, collectively. This is at the Mining Institute, Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne on the 26th of November 2013. Supported by Wunderbar.

  • ''Synchrocrispicity'': collective synchronized crisp eating: at the Gallery North Project Space, Gallery North, Northumbria University 28th November 2013.

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"Trying to look like Steven Gerrard when he scored in the World Cup qualifier against Poland at Wembley, 2013"

Sponsors: Arts and Humanities Research Council