Project description

nick @ 7:02 am

Sonia Cillari

Sensitive to Pleasure

Performative electric-field sensing and sound environment (performance duration: ~ 2 hours)

Co-produced by STEIM and Netherlands Media Art Institute in Amsterdam and Claudio Buziol Foundation in Venice.
Supported by Fonds BKVB and Optofonica Laboratory for Immersive ArtScience in Amsterdam.

Sensitive to Pleasure
is a work about conflict, an intimate piece in which the artist emphasizes her controversial relationship with her own work in front of the public.

Cillari stands outside the door of a dark Ambisonic cube, where she grants entry to only one visitor at a time. The cube features her work, a naked female (the ‘creature’), which reveals the sound of its body when in contact with other human beings. The physical interaction between the creature and the visitor is linked to the artist’s body via electrical pulses, provoking a strong physical experience in her which is painful but might also be considered pleasant. Cillari uses the visitor to gain a physical experience about her work.

The intimacy between the visitor and the creature inside will not be documented in order to guarantee intimacy and allow the visitor to fully experience the work through involvement and exposure. Cillari wants to explore ways in which visitors may interact with the creature knowing that their behavior causes a strong physical reaction on her outside the cube. At the same time, she explores the notion of voyeurism within the audience, watching her while she ‘experiences’ her own work of art.

A path of lights guides the visitor to the entrance of the cube; the lights’ subtle changes reflect the encounters between the visitor and the creature, enhancing the sensuality of the work.

Sensitive to Pleasure is homage to Pygmalion (Ovid’s Metamorphoses, X), the sculptor who falls in love with a statue he created. This work deals with an inverted relationship of control between the creator and his own creation. The physical connection between them represents keeping each other alive, a metaphor of mutually dependent relationship.

Sensitive to Pleasure connects with Sonia Cillari’s latest research of working with and exploring the Body as Interface.

Project credits:

Hardware interface development: Stock
Environment programming: Ulrich Berthold
Ambisonics sound design and implementation: Maurizio Martinucci (aka Tez)

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported License.