I want to start this post with mentioning my interactive installation. When the audience opens the box, the camera in the box captures the audience’s face to make it displayed on the stairway. Then, whenever the audiences step down the stairway, the part displayed on the stair breaks down.
Break Me from SungJin Nam on Vimeo.
Personally, I really like this work (even though it is mine, whatever ). This is the first piece that I could show my work to public. When I finished the this installation, I was so so so tired, fell asleep with full of heart. However, my phone rang and woke me up. It was the curator from gallery, she said that she would put a sign on the box, “Open the Box”. I said “Shit, no, never do that.”, but she called me just to inform me, not to ask about my opinion.
Well, I have to admit this, it was true that this piece seems to fail to attract people to open the box naturally, because my coworkers and I wanted to avoid typical interactions. Though Tom Igoe said that there’s a lot we can add to the thing already done in his article, we felt like avoiding typical things including video mirrors, body-as-cursor, or LED things that have occupied the modern art gallery before. However, in terms of interactions, ‘typical’ might not be the bad word. ‘Typical’ means that people are already too familiar with something, they know how to make something work without any efforts to figure out. Moreover, as Norman said, poor interactions cannot be covered by the label. If I failed to make people to interact with my work, the failure is reflecting my work. If I should attach long long statement to my work, it would be better to make games with thick manual book.
However, I still believe that struggling for new interactions is valuable, especially in art field. Even though un-seamless interactions will sometimes need self-explanations and bother the audiences, some ( or few) of those things would be able to expand the way audiences expand. Moreover, these experiments cannot be done in industrial field in which all people are working for perfectly comfortable interface.