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Emotional Algorithms
works by Jan Guy
curated by Yves Lee
22/09/2018 - 01/10/2018

Jan Guy

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I often think that the way one experiences the world is something that is equally shared by others, and for the most part this is true. But it can take almost a lifetime to realise that the way we are put together differs by degree. It can also take time to realise that our values and understanding of our own make-up are not the result of a consistent reality. The embedded nuances of a personal disposition are forever challenged by shifting collective ideas. As a child, I thought nothing of staring for hours at the hairs on a blade of grass or fixating on the texture of my mother’s roped, woollen cardigan while she chastised me. My world has been predominantly remembered and emotionally felt through the haptics of touch. It is no wonder that the directness of clay has remained an important part of my material vocabulary. It allows discrete movement from the mystery of formlessness to the unimaginable form. This is the poetics of art. 

 

One of my greatest pleasures is to travel to new places to make art in residency. Whilst I carry my habits with me, wherever I go I am newly immersed in the poetics of the world; discovering new sounds, smells, light, gestures in the fibre of the land and its inhabitants. It is the unexpected things and events that become the focus of these inevitably brief, creative encounters. I am grateful for these opportunities. They provide limitations in that I am outside the comforts of home and expansion in that I have to engage with the unknown and unfamiliar.

 

Recent philosophical research into Artificial Intelligence and Neuroscience suggests that the seemingly unwieldly complexity of human emotions may be measurable algorithms. I hope not, but if it is, then let the mathematical become the subtleties and beauty of art. Let me remain ignorant of the reductive equation.