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The Emotion Is Present

Project details

Bachelor – Advertising & Beyond
Autonomous Practices

Developed at the intersection of psychology, technology, and design,
the ‘Emotional Attachment’ introduces biofeedback to the world of photography. Helping the photographer to prioritize self-exploration and growth.

Sensing psychological sweat with this attachment helps detect when
the photographer is triggered and instructs them to further explore this topic by triggering the camera and capturing what moves them.

The printed image serves as a representation of the shed emotional weight of the photographer, completing the transformative journey of self-reflection and growth.

Fast-Food Fast-Fashion all of these fast expressions are ruining the creative experience. With a mass shift from analog to digital photography, came the rise of social media/image platforms. These platforms such as facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat also condition users to tailor their content to receive more ‘likes’, restricting reach when users don’t comply. My goal is to shift the focus from seeking external validation to growing a deeper connection with one’s own images, allowing for more authentic expression.

The Emotion Is Present
In “The Emotion Is Present,” the artist and a participant sit opposite each other at a table precisely one meter long—the minimal distance required for a portrait photo to be sharp. Positioned in the middle of the table is an analog camera rigged to the ‘Emotional Attachment’. This device measures the psychological sweat on the thumbs of the person holding the camera. Each participant takes turns holding the camera and attempting to capture a photo of the other while looking through the camera.

When the photographer experiences an emotional trigger/discomfort, in this case from the person in front of them, they instinctively begin to sweat. The attachment detects this subtle physiological response and triggers the camera to capture the moment. Emotions that are typically invisible become the catalyst for capturing a photograph, immortalizing the instant of emotional connection.

This performative research piece delves into the often unspoken bonds that can form between the photographer and the subject, in this case, two people. By creating a setting where participants must be fully present and emotionally open, “The Emotion Is Present” captures authentic moments of human connection and emotional resonance. This interactive experience invites viewers to contemplate the power of presence and the depth of emotional engagement in photography.
With instant feedback from the moving hinge mechanism when the camera is triggered.

The title “The Emotion Is Present” refers to Marina Abramović’s iconic performance “The Artist Is Present.” While Abramović’s work focused on the physical and mental presence of the artist in a shared space with the audience, “The Emotion Is Present” shifts the focus to the emotional presence and connection between individuals. By capturing these emotional moments through the triggering of the camera, the piece pays homage to Abramović’s exploration of human connection, endurance, and presence, while introducing a new dimension of emotional engagement and interaction.

Link to research paper:

Some screenshots from my research paper: