WHAT’S YOUR MOOD?
Wooden structure with atmosphere. Fabric, lighting, felt, salt, inflatable balls, lamps and welding curtain
Artists: Rutie Borthwick & Rebecca James, Scientist: Matilde Vaghi
What’s Your Mood? offers participants a moment to notice their feelings and sensations in response to an unfamiliar environment.
Artists Rutie and Rebecca have built this structure in reference to the process studied by cognitive neuroscientist Matilde Vaghi. Matilde measures how mood influences the way we make decisions. In the lab, participants are asked to make simple choices and report their mood on a scale, in the context of well-controlled experiments.
This work creates an IRL version. Its logic resembles a video game and asks the player to choose their direction, notice their environment and pay attention to their physical experience.
To begin, each person creates a label for themselves to describe how they are feeling. As they engage with the artwork, their labels with sensations and emotions are left behind, placed on the surfaces of the structure as the participants recognise a change or shift in their mood. A moment of self recognition and self-expression.
By expanding the lab process to include different spaces, each person is offered creative choices and an opportunity to reflect on their sensory response. The data produced is nuanced and demonstrates each individual’s interaction with the spaces they encounter. As the labels build up they provide a context and social connection for those who follow.
Matilde is a research fellow interested in how individual differences in the ability of selecting the best course of action relate to mood. More generally she uses cognitive neuroscience approaches to understand symptoms of psychiatric disorders such as depression and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
Rutie is an artist who creates installations that re-awaken the viewers inner child with tactile sensory experiences.
Rebecca is an artist exploring new perspectives in the structure of organic systems, and ideas of living presence and communication with other organisms.