Pattern & Perception – Gemma May Latham


About the Artwork

Our perceptions of experiences are often based on interpretations of the conscious. This work invites you to explore and perceive the subconscious experience. Pattern & Perception will use archival textile patterns produced in Manchester’s mills as a starting point for an interactive piece, inviting visitors to explore and perceive the subconscious experience.

This work builds upon previous research and development that has investigated the potential to collect biometric data during engagement (through non-invasive methods) and using it as a live material for both digital and physical outputs. Scientific research suggests the physiological responses can be used as indicators of emotion and that biometrics such as heart rate (BPM and IBI) and galvanic skin response can be used as indicators for experiences such as joy, valence and arousal.

A combined biometric sensor in the space will collect participants’ data through the interaction of a hand being placed upon it. A series of thermal printers will respond (simultaneously) to the data coming in and will collectively form a large scale pattern that encodes the live data being collected and visualising the perceived emotions of the participant.

About the Artist

Latham’s practice explores the crossovers between coding and textiles, inviting the public to co-produce temporal artwork through accessible forms of engagement. Fascinated by the immersive qualities of textile making, she seeks to capture and interpret participant experiences. Most recently Latham has been exploring biometric feedback mechanisms as a way of producing usable live data for artistic interpretation, through which participant experiences can be shared visually and simultaneously.

With a Masters in Design from Manchester School of Art (2013), Latham has developed participatory installations and activities for organisations such as the Whitworth Art Gallery. Significant projects include Stitch Type as part of The Making It Project at Winchester Discovery Centre and a collaborative piece for Barnaby Festival in Macclesfield called {MACC}:Card in 2014. More recently Latham worked on collaborative project Co~Tidal as part of participatory exhibition ‘If Were The Ocean’ at the National Maritime Museum, Olso.