2017 Inception Award | An Autonomous Report

For a Postmodern Society

An Autonomous Report is a speculative programme that positions itself in a post-modern, nihilistic future. It is a reaction to turbulent economies and pathologisation of social values and ideologies. By bringing historical narratives together with my ideas regarding the perception of space, I’ve attempted to make connections between the perceptual nature of the human experience and the modern social structures in which it takes place.

A system that interprets economic, environmental, social and political information is integrated into a proposed structure. This information is received via a series of inputs, analysed through a ‘Perspective Manipulator’ and ‘Ideals Extractor’ and projected into a void within the structure as an autonomous report. The report is perceived by the users of the structure as a qualitative projection of information rather than a quantitative abstraction. By positioning the human body as a tool for the perception of environmental surroundings, the system reports on the state of society by projecting aural and sub-aural energy into the space. Its shifting projections of energy fill the void with movement. It resonates in the space between the walls. The space allows for the release of energy, and the build-up of silence. It enables the projection of energy to move through the foundations, to creep down into the site and to fill the gaps between the muscles and bones of its users.

This project applies my research on qualitative means for understanding space in relation to our subjective experience of the world, to a curiosity about the relationship between ideologies and structures of society. Overall, it is a personal attempt at making sense of the world. It employs reason and rationality, speculation and imagination to distinguish between objective definitions of the world and my subjective experience of it. These subjective experiences, conditioned by and grounded within a social reality, make up my perception of world. I’ve attempted to make connections between the perceptual nature of the human experience and the modern social structures in which it takes place.

Two fundamental principles, adapted from phenomenology (the philosophical study of the structures of experience and consciousness) underpin the development of the system:

1. Although we are surrounded by an infinite number of things, this is not the world where any individual lives.

2. An individual’s subjective experience of the world is made up from a subset of these things.

We exist within social realities. These are structures that provide us with a social framework — where subjective experiences of reality can take place. These structures contain the information that tells us how to act in the world and how we should interact with others. These can be referred to as collective values and belief systems. Several times over the last century the values and belief systems of societies became pathological resulting in the unjust imprisonment or execution of tens of millions of people. This happened because ideas are fragmented throughout groups in society — and when they come together, the whole philosophy acts itself out. Because our perception of the world can only be made up of past and present experiences, in relation to our viewpoint of the future, we can only ever perceive fragments of ideologies that float around our society, never quite being able to experience the full picture. The system attempts to provide its users with a qualitative report on the whole of society and the direction it predicts it to be heading in, in order to avoid the sense of hopelessness that fills the air in times of political or economic unrest. It employs the power of collective observation to monitor the nature of these fragmented ideas. A qualitative report is generated and articulated into the structure through the conversion of information into aural & sub-aural energy. It is to be understood through embodied experience.