My most recent post about the Parsons building brings to the fore the ongoing interest I have had in the parsons building since 2013 when I began visiting David Taylor there to discuss the overlaps of interest in both of our practices.
The notion that it consisted of two different buildings abutting and melting into each other was fascinating for me. In actual fact bricks from the original 19th Century building were deliberately preserved and are on display in the main corridor. See image below.
In 2015 David Taylor and I exhibited a selection of art and scientific pieces in the liminal space between the two buildings. See to follow a slide show of images form that exhibition and an extract from the exhibition press release outlining some of the notions of interest to both David and I.
It is interesting that the architectural themes of this liminal space and the exoskeleton notions of interest to David and I are still relevant in the work being created for the upcoming exhibition. More to follow on this in a later blog post….
“ Endo Exo: Opening event: Monday 21st September 12.30pm – 1.30pm. Hassett will respond performatively to various sculptural elements in the exhibition during the opening on September 21st. The exhibition will continue until the 2nd of October in the Mechanical Engineering Building, Trinity College Dublin and will be on view from 9am – 5pm Monday to Friday.
Images from Olivia Hassett solo performance part of Endo Exo
The hybrid nature of the Parsons Building in Trinity College Dublin with its recent award winning modern build attached to the original building has fascinated Hassett since she began visiting and working with David Taylor in 2013. endo/exo is sited in the reception area at the point where the exterior of the old building negotiates with the new addition and becomes an internal wall.
endo/exo acts like a bookmark in the ongoing interdisciplinary collaboration between artist Olivia Hassett and engineer David Taylor. Where Hassett’s work deals mainly with the internal visceral human body and the skin threshold that surrounds it, Taylor’s research focuses on the mechanical characteristics of bones in both exoskeletons (e.g. insects) and endoskeletons (e.g. humans). Both practitioners share an interest in interfaces, the liminal threshold between inside and outside and it is at this point where most of their discussions and outcomes have derived.
To date outcomes include the development of a hypothetical human exoskeleton prototype of the knee joint by Taylor and various hybrid art/science works created by Hassett incorporating and responding to Taylor’s design and notions surrounding the existence of a hard external skin.
Occupying a liminal space between animation and inanimate objecthood, various elements of endo/exo will go through transformative processes mediated by environmental factors and the artist’s performing body. The nature of these elements will shift back and forth across the tenuous boundary separating active, embodiment and the alleged passivity, of an acquiescent, inanimate, state and are reminiscent of the ongoing transformations that occur within the human body.
Kindly supported by Trinity College Dublin and South Dublin County Council