“In your backbone you feel a pointed something and it works its way up. The base of your spine is tingling, tingling, tingling, tingling. Then n|om makes your thoughts nothing in your head”
[Kxao ≠Oah - a healer from |Kae|kae area, quoted in Biesele, Katz & St Denis 1997:19]
(taken from JU|’HOANSI HEALING SONGS on NTS-radio)
For our midterm in Digital Fabrication, we iterated on the idea of the swarm based behavior. After reading more about Joseph Beuys’ use of felt and honey in his fluxus-performances in the late 60s and the JU|’HOANSI tribe and their use of healing through dance, we shifted our focus to the idea of a healing ritual for the digital age.
We are thinking about making a piece that uses three components in an interactive installation:
an image in Base64 code on paper (used for image encoding on the web)
felt with a perforated structure
As shown in the image above, a depiction of the artists in a waterfall-like silhouette made from Base64 encoding is printed on paper. This is the foundation of the sculpture that reflects ourselves that we want to heal. Above the paper is a layer of felt cut in strips and shaped in a web. It filters the honey dripping from above which acts as a part of the healing ritual: Beuys saw honey as a healing material as it is gathered by bees, which represented a “peaceful” entity.
A coincidence we found out while cutting felt with the laser: it smells like honey afterwards.