Photos: J.Thompson

‘Fluidity’ is an interactive lighting installation which visualises the ‘gender experiences’ of the Design Festival’s audience. Aether & Hemera’s installation consists of dynamic lighting scenarios that elaborate on audience’s gender perception expressed on a chromatic scale, transforming Newcastle Central Library into a colourful and dynamic environment.

Twenty Perspex tubes in compression inside a net of continuous tension create a tensegrity structure, embedding RGB LED lights modulated by bespoke software. The control system includes an Arduino, bespoke DMX circuitry and software to allow people to interact with the artwork by scanning QR codes and connecting their mobile phone to the Fluidity webpage.

The engagement revolves around individual’s gender perceptions expressed on a chromatic scale in association with each particular moment in time, using a colourful gradient to tag experiences between the polar labels of ‘Feminine’ and ‘Masculine’ and all the grades in between.
Departing from the binary logic of gender representation and question pre-assumptions, the artists hope to open up new opportunities for discussion around gender identity. Individuals are invited to explore their emotional response over different times gaining insight on their own subjectivity, including gender stasis and fluidity.

The project results from the collaboration between Aether & Hemera and Dr. Kevin Hilton, Reader in Designing for Transformational Experiences at Northumbria University.
Supported using public funding by Arts Council England.