I’m back in Austin but I’m “bubbled” with my partner and her mom and sister. My Mother lives in Austin but I haven’t gone to go see her. We quarantined two weeks when we got here, and then my partner’s Mom had an exposure scare so we waited longer. My mother has gotten increasingly despondent, even though we had got her an iPhone and managed to show her how to facetime with us on it.
Last night I had a dream about a physical version of grotto. In my dream it made sense- it was a series of barriers to project screens on and markings on the floor for rooms, walking into a space triggered an entrance into the web page A player could either interface with the maze by walking into these physical spaces or by visiting the pages on the web. When I woke up I quickly tried to model it out in 3d, how many walls would it take, how many projectors… and it dissolved, like so many dream ideas do. It became cumbersome, complicated. The 20 interconnected rooms of Hunt the Wumpus became a 10 room grid and became less interesting. It started feeling like having to walk through Ikea to me.
Physically situating interactive art is attractive to me because I’m interested in the subjectivity of these experiences that come from place and audience. I also get pretty exhausted sharing space with people at times. Isolating in tight quarters with in-laws (and they are perfectly pleasant in-laws) has put pressure on these feelings I have about place. I am here with them and I’m also online with friends at the same time. I’m talking to my mother all the time on the phone and I can see her face but it’s not satisfying to her. It almost seems to make it worse for her. There’s a tug of war between the need for privacy and the need for intimacy that somehow impossibly seems to be pulling in both ways at once as these needs are artificially met or forced on us.