Invisible is a new artwork that uses interactive mirrors to escape from the here and now, creating a doorway to another place and time, a wild fairy tale world, a no-mans land or a bridge across the sea. It is being developed by Primary resident artist Rachel Jacobs in collaboration with British/Brazilian artist Silvia Leal, in partnership with Horizon Digital Economy Research at the University of Nottingham.

The first phase of the Invisible project involved a one week residency at Primary Studios and a public workshop event and lunchtime conversation that was open to the artists and residents at Primary. The Nottingham based team – Rachel Jacobs, Robin Shackford, Holger Schnadelbach and Antony Brown spent a week in the main space at Primary (PS1) experimenting with the mirror technology, developing a simple narrative experience with the mirror that was then displayed in the strange, smelly corridor at the back of PS1. Rachel Jacobs and Silvia Leal also collaborated via Skype on the artistic elements of the project and developing narrative interactions.

On the final day of the residency Primary artist residents and local people were invited to view the experiments and the experimental installation that was created during the week.

The resident lunch involved a conversation about the project, showing the residents documentation of the work done during the week, discussing some of the themes of storytelling and local history. The residents also took part in an activity sent by Silvia involving playing with relational objects and elastic to get a sense of physicality and sensory engagement – that connects to the artwork of Brazilian artist Lygia Clark. These activities were then discussed in contrast to their experience of interacting with the interactive mirror.

The aim of the public workshop was to invite local/interested people to contribute to the artistic and technical development of the project and begin conversations about the project themes. Although there was only 4 people who came along to this first workshop it provided an opportunity to start the conversation, test how the mirror can trigger conversations and responses to the environment in which it is placed and to work together to write stories and create experience of imaginary spaces that will eventually be part of the work.

More workshops and a performance lab event are due to take place between now and December, email Rachel at: rachel@i-am-ai.net if you are interested in taking partor keep an out on the Primary website for more information.

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