Senses encoding environmental information. The object represents the limit of our senses.

Audio spectrogram from surrounding noise of the fashion sculpture piece. Recoded using a Tascam DR-40 PCM recorder, then played back through speakers into spectrogram .

Sculptural fashion piece placed here to pick up surrounding environmental sounds to produce Spectrogram image above.

The constructed fashion piece was placed here for the purposes of recording environmental sounds around the object itself, in order to produce a range of spectrogram images that I found interesting in exploring the ideas of sound and visual perceptions.

The two images are linked but not at any level we recognise as two separate senses encode data in very different ways. The brain deals with very different aspects of environmental data and coalesces them into uniform understandable frameworks for us. I find the idea of the world as being made up of these electrical signals that we interpret though our brains to perceive the world as we do a fascinating area of study.

I have a genetic eye disease which means that areas of my retina are being destroyed through an inflammatory process. This results in the signals I receive to my brain through the optic nerve being distorted. Thus where a normally sighted (wired) brain would see lines that were straight as straight I see them as crooked. So the data is distorted by a process of disease and it is only when there is a breakdown in the normal process of working of a sense that often we suddenly become interested in these marvellous ways the body has of interpreting signals 'correctly' in an environment.

The audio signal could become a visually impaired persons view of an object if the audible sense was translated into visual patterns. This is very abstract of course but it does inform the viewer of processes that are constantly at work in the human body and how the world is perceivable only the way it is by us because of the way our senses are organised. Another creature might find the audio data hugely informative in terms of the density and height of shapes made via audio information and perhaps a bat for example might have some sort of visual representation of the sounds they pick up.

The point ultimately I imagine is that the world is how it 'is' because of they way our sense organs are designed to perceive it. Another creature will perceive the exact same object entirely differently. Thus an objects 'reality' has more facets than our senses are designed to detect. The object is in effect a representation of the limit of our senses.

People may say it is entirely hyperbolic to describe a sculptural fashion piece as in some way representing a challenge to our senses but for me it is a very valid way of emphasising how cultural 'norms' equally only represent the limit of our learned senses. To me that is a hugely important thing for creatives to acknowledge and explore. What we accept is the limit of something not its actual possibilities to be something other or more. Yes we may be ridiculed for such ideas but then as I found when my sight started failing there are wonders to explore beyond the limits of our senses. The boundaries we place upon our imaginations and the courage to explore other 'realities' is all that stops us.


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