This October, Stout Studio and multi-disciplinary artist Kate Tiernan present An Exercise in Vulnerability - a new interactive installation, produced by Ulla Winkler, which explores technology’s effect on human relationships.
Brought together by a shared interest in our changing behaviors in the digital age, motion graphic specialists Stout Studio and Tiernan, who has a particular interest in spatial relationships, philosophical conundrums and cognitive empathy, have collaborated to create an immersive audio-visual experience that throws a spotlight on our increasingly virtual existence, and challenges us to be open, therefore vulnerable, in a real world scenario.
Today, digital platforms and personal devices have created a paradox. Although they facilitate greater connectedness, the quality of those connections is arguably deteriorating. Despite encouraging openness and sharing (which often results in what could be considered over-exposure), social media in particular create a wall behind which we can hide – from where we can curate heavily edited representations of ourselves… bespoke avatars for interaction with the rest of the world.
This begs the question that we are at once better and worse connected.
An Exercise in Vulnerability confronts this paradox. Using Stout’s expertise in real-time generated motion graphics and Tiernan’s textual, sculptural and performative practice, the collaborators have created an interactive interview lab like no other.
On arrival, visitors will be paired with a stranger and, entering the room in twos, will be asked a series of questions. Instead of speaking, they will answer using movement and gestures, which will be instantaneously translated into a series of visual representations, visible to both participants, who face each other, divided by a translucent screen.
Further details of the installation are embargoed in order to allow visitors the best possible experience, however Stout co-founders Pod Bluman and Lewis Kyle White do say, “We encourage participants to really open up. Everyone who takes part will be asked to wear galvanic sheet detectors, similar to the technology used in lie detector tests. This is not because we want to invade your privacy… The experience is entirely confidential, it will not be filmed and none of the information you share will be recorded. However, it’s important that people answer truthfully. The more focused and honest you are, the more vivid the results and the better the experience will be.”
Kate Tiernan adds, “Our ambition is to create a strong human connection, enabled by a high-end digital encounter. However it is ultimately the choices that people make that will decide how successful, how powerful, each encounter is.”
“Most people believe that vulnerability is weakness, but really vulnerability is courage…(it) is the birthplace of innovation, creativity and change.” Dr. Brené Brown, University of Houston
In an era that is becoming increasingly virtual, Stout and Tiernan have created An Exercise in Vulnerability in order to bring people together in the real world and build more tangible connections between them.
“It is the potential relationships made in this room, and how those may pan out after visitors leave it that fascinate us.” Kate Tiernan & Stout Studios.
For all press enquiries, including interview and image requests, contact Bakul Patki: firstname.lastname@example.org / 07984462358
An Experiment in Vulnerability takes place on October 7th & 8th at Platform Southwark 1 Joan Street, London SE1. Tickets (free) are available at: