Syntonic Refuge

Collaboration as a member of LabSynthE (Laboratory for Electronic and Synthetic Poetry)

What: interactive piece. Two people wear the shawl and the gloves attached to it. When they touch hands, sensors sewed to the glove with measure each other’s heart beat and display in LED of two different colors woven across the shawl.

When: First iteration presented at the Holocaust Remembrance Day 2019, organized by the Ackerman Center for Holocaust Studies of the UT Dallas.

Display History:
September 2019 – Digital Frontiers, Austin, TX
May 2019 – BEST Symposium, Frisco, TX
May 2019 – Lobby of the School of Arts, Technology and Emerging Communication (ATEC), at UT Dallas.

Artist statement by LabSynthE
In community, people find and offer refuge by coming together in common practices such as hugging and holding hands. Sharing an embrace and the space between our bodies co-regulates our embodied reactions, thus cultivating a sense of peace amid stress or fear.
Syntonic Refuge is a social engagement that explores the importance of refuge for survivors and the act of surviving. We find refuge in our community of individuals. People are syntonic, harmoniously responsive to the changing needs of the situation. Through close human interaction, Syntonic Refuge makes visible the heartbeats of two people who wrap themselves in the embrace of a handmade shawl. The shawl represents both care of the individual, and a shelter for shared experience.
Syntonic Refuge asks participants to come closer. Consider our common experience of survivorship, especially on a day in which we are remembering the enormity of human suffering through global atrocities, and share refuge in the heart.

We used one shawl that Dr. Sabrina Starnaman had made before (the purple, blue and green), and collectively knitted a new one (the cream and yellow one).

Pictures by me otherwise noted.