Thesis Info

Thesis Title
Development and Evaluation of Participant-Centred Biofeedback Artworks
George Poonkhin Khut
2nd Author
3rd Author
Doctorate of Creative Arts
Number of Pages
University of Western Sydney
Thesis Supervisor
Dr Garth Paine
Supervisor e-mail
garth AT
Other Supervisor(s)
Language(s) of Thesis
Department / Discipline
Electronic Arts
Languages Familiar to Author
URL where full thesis can be found
biofeedback, interactive art, creative arts, human-computer interaction, embodiment, body-focused, user experience,
Abstract: 200-500 words
This exegesis details the development of four interactive artworks that enable audiences to observe and reflect on aspects of their own psychophysiology, using the technologies of biofeedback interaction as a way of situating the participant’s subjectivity and bodily experiences within each other as reciprocal phenomena. The central theme addressed through these works concerns the representation and experience of subjectivity as a physiologically embodied phenomenon. Although contemporary theories of psychophysiology and phenomenology have overturned the idea of mind-body separation, many forms of cultural practice continue to represent subjectivity as a fundamentally disembodied phenomenon. In addition, bodily experience in contemporary culture is framed almost entirely in terms of narrowly defined and commodity driven notions of sexuality and desirability, or even pathology. Such representations and experiences perpetuate feelings of mistrust and hostility towards the body, in ways that inhibit our ability to fully engage with the world as fully humans. This problematic use and representation of the body in contemporary culture has attracted the attention of many artists and theorists over the past fifty years, generating a diverse body of works celebrating and sometimes questioning the embodied subject as a medium for enquiry and aesthetic enrichment. The artworks documented in this exegesis extend this process of reexamination through the use of interactive bio-sensing technologies and audience participation. Interactive practices reframe subjectivity as a fundamentally active process, shifting our sense of involvement in the issues at hand from one of detached onlookers to active participants. Each of the works creates a space where participants and observers alike can become present to aspects of body-mind process. Audience responses to these works have been studied as a way of evaluating the extent to which these interests have been realised through interaction and this exegesis contributes to an emerging but growing body of research into the use of audience experience as a tool for designing and evaluating interactive artworks.