Next week the Department of Biological Flow will visit the Balance and Gait Laboratory at Brock University to continue our trajectory of research-creation on the moving human body as it is integrated with broader information networks of signal and noise. To this point the project has primarily been about the walking body in surveillant public and quasi-public spaces, the idea of gait as a uniquely identifying feature, and what we have understood to be an emergence of gait-based surveillance.
Our Kino-Gait Study No.3 was basically an attempt to ask what would happen if the skin-as-volumetric-construct could "see back" in surveillant space — in other words, if gait became our method of seeing rather than the eye (kino-gait). The video above was an experiment to demonstrate that concept.
Following the twin legacies of Muybridge and Marey, the motion capture studio exists today as both clinical instrument for biomechanical analysis and productive apparatus for entertainment spectacle. Its surveillance function is located somewhere in between. Our goal during the study next week is to have an embodied experience of "motion capture" and to creatively play within these tensional intersections.
The objectives for this study include:
- Develop a "normal" full model of walking body.
- Decode or "scramble" the markers by changing their locations on the body joints and walk again — what would this do?
- Have the two Department of Biological Flow members "glued" together front-to-back. The forward person has markers on front and left sides of the body, the rear person has markers on right and back sides of the body. The two bodies match strides, glued together, and then "split" apart halfway and veer off in opposite directions, as if "tearing" the subject in two or radically reconfiguring its relationality.
After these objectives are completed, the next phase of the study will have us wrap a simple videogame flesh texture map around the mocap model and then see what happens to the flesh and its gestural qualities when scrambled (as in scenario #2) or when the body splits in two directions (as in scenario #3).