UNKNOWN UNKNOWNS (2020) is a project bringing together patient ambassadors for Blood Cancer UK and stem cell researchers working at the Jeffrey Cheah Biomedical Centre. Through a series of stop-motion animation workshops held via Zoom, participants developed hand-cut animation sequences exploring their experiences of ‘the unknown’ in relation to living with blood cancer, the challenges of research and the global uncertainties of Covid-19. Animation materials included paper, velvet and issues of National Geographic published in 1960, the year Blood Cancer UK officially became a charity.
Commissioned by the Wellcome - MRC Cambridge Stem Cell Institute as part of its Public Engagement programme, project outcomes include an animated film featuring participants’ stop-motion sequences (Futuramic Unknown, 2020) and an installation for the Jeffery Cheah Biomedical Center at Cambridge Biomedical Campus (The Night the Mountains Moved, 2020).
a binaural sound installation for two strangers
Designed as an unregulated social experiment in proxemics and listening together, the free-standing installation (built from appropriated household furniture and fittings) suggests both the familiar and the surreal. The binaural soundtrack, played through over-ear headphones, uses applied psychoacoustics to immerse the pair of listeners into a shadowy narrative that subtly explores themes of loneliness and the power of interconnectivity, whilst simultaneously exposing them as both observer and the observed.
• 8 Victorian wooden doors, velvet flocked
• 2 chairs
• Wool rug
• Pendant light with exposed Edison bulb
• Modified antique side table
• Coded Arduino sound system (operated by the press of a button)
• 2 sets of over-ear headphone
Soundtrack co-composed with Will Heasman
Commissioned by Cambridge Junction (2017); supported by Arts Council England
Splitter is also exhibited in an open-plan variation using 2 wooden chairs, the sound table and wool rug (image, bottom left)