Kelly Dobson is an artist and engineer. She has a Ph.D. MIT; Master of Science in Media Arts and Sciences, MIT. In her work she believes that exciting things can happen between people and machines that aren’t driven by profit, instead designing personalised appliances that address everyday human needs.
The next year will involve getting to know the individuals and the ways in which they could work with the artist to design and build a series of social vehicles. Each vehicle will be built to respond to the specific interests of individuals in the group. Static dodgems that ‘move’ in a very different way. Kelly is looking at ways sound can be filtered so that time feels to be moving slowly or quickly, allowing in altered frequencies and events which the user is most interested and most enjoys . Psycho-acoustically addressing the sound in a space, making a room feel bigger and time to be a bit slower.
Kelly will work, with the individuals and their staff teams to try out the different materials, sending over interfaces, expressive output possibilities, textures, materials, provocations, questions, things to break or covet or alter, etc. in order to learn more about the sensory and expressive possibilities and preferences and desires of the four people. The more Kelly learns about the individuals then the more materials will be added, e.g. the use of wood and paper in the vehicles as one of the participants likes to make with these materials.
As Kelly is based in San Francisco we have devised a way to keep her work going within the day centre, collating the information necessary to build the pods . Artists Kevin McPhee and Franscesca Nobilucci will work in collaboration with Kelly liaising with her, following her instructions, trying out ideas.
Instructions for Francesca and Kevin, artists working time Kelly
The idea is that they establish an ongoing working relationship with each of the individuals, their care workers and Kelly Dobson who is currently based in San Francisco. They will be required to collaborate with all involved and feed back information to Kelly. This will establish :-
• each individuals skills base
• where their tolerances and interests lie
• What to avoid that over stimulates or under stimulates
• what they can make and how that can be adapted for the pod
• How they use objects (via questions and instructions suggested or sent by Kelly) and understand how they are used
• How hardy these object needs to be – prototyping parts to try out with the individuals, gaining an understanding of what works and what doesn’t.