George Khut’s ‘The Heart Library Project’ at Group Therapy: Mental Distress in a Digital Age at FACT HQ (Liverpool, England, UK)

Group Therapy: Mental Distress in a Digital Age

Originating from FACT’s extensive work within mental health and wellbeing, the exhibition explores the complex relationship between technology, society, and mental health.

The Heart Library Project

The Heart Library Project: 2009-2012 from George Khut on Vimeo.

The Heart Library Project is an interactive art exhibition designed for presentation in hospital and health care settings, schools, museums and art galleries. It combines interactive heart rate controlled audio-visuals with audience participation to create a unique environment where people can reflect, explore and share experiences connected to ideas of embodiment, body-mind and presence.

Emotionally-mediated changes in heart-rate are used to influence the colour and sound of large, ceiling mounted video projection: a mirror image of the participant resting below – created with a hidden video camera. Participants see their own body as if floating above them – like a reverse out-of-body experience. The projected imagery gets redder in colour as their heart rate gets faster, and goes blue when their rate is slowing down.

The Heart Library Project: Mapping Experience, Sharing Stories… from George Khut on Vimeo.

After their interaction with the video, participants are invited to contribute a response to the work in the form of a hand-drawn experience map and recorded interviews – these contributions constitute ‘The Heart Library’ – a celebration and reflection of the body as a living experience, imbued with feelings, motivations, history and imagination…

http://georgekhut.com/heartlibrary/#9

Group Therapy: Mental Distress in a Digital Age at FACT HQ (Liverpool, England, UK)

It is commonly noted that one in four people in the UK will experience a mental health issue at some time in their lives. What is less often discussed is why in a wealthy and technologically advanced part of the world, so many of us continue to struggle with poor mental health.

For many the presence of digital technologies is exacerbating this problem, by altering our sense of self and our social relationships. Meanwhile, others suggest that technological innovation is a crucial tool for finding new ways to improve the lives of those who experience social isolation, illness and emotional distress.

Group Therapy presents a diverse collection of artworks, research and design innovation exploring connections between mental health and the values, political conditions, and technologies that that structure our lives. It frames mental health not as problem that affects a small cohort of people living on the fringes of society, but as a social issue that plays a part in all of our lives. To emphasise this, the exhibition and many of the works within it are designed to prompt visitors to reflect on their own mental state, by creating experiences that bring awareness to the body and mind.

FutureEverything 2015 (Manchester, UK)

Celebrating it’s 20th anniversary in 2015!

The FutureEverything festival brings people together to discover, share and experience new ideas for the future. Pioneering the practice of city-wide ‘festival as laboratory’ it combines a large scale cultural event – encompassing art, music and discussion – with new technology, novel research methods and playful social experiments. It has been named by The Guardian as one of the top ten ideas festivals in the world.