wake up and smell the art at tate sensorium
See, hear, smell, touch and taste the (Francis) Bacon as Tate Britain opens it’s wonder Sensorium.
From the kids who started playing candy crush the moment they slipped out the womb, to gadget-obsessed geriatrics, technology is the go to attraction of the 00s. So, for art to remain truly relevant, it needs to grow collaboratively with the technology we are all so hooked on.
Cue Tate Gallery's IK Prize, an annual initiative to support the use of technology in helping audiences experience art from a fresh perspective. In 2014, After Darkallowed online users to steer robots around Tate Britain in the dead of the night. Now, a year later, Flying Object's Tate Sensorium is being unveiled. Their idea goes like this… Imagine if aside from just seeing a painting, you could also taste it, hear it and feel it? Well now you can, and, as with all the best things in life, it's free.
Flying Object have chosen four paintings by Richard Hamilton, Francis Bacon, David Bomberg and John Latham, and, in a softly carpeted, slate-grey room, you can get acquainted with each in new, unpredictable ways. Master chocolatier Paul A Young will explode your mind with a totally bizarre edible experience. Fragrant smells created by scent expert Odette Toilette will waft past you, using high tech perfume release gadgetry. Sounds designed by Nick Ryan will ring in your ears in three dimensions thanks to binaural and directional audio systems. Then, some pioneering touchless haptics technology will use ultrasound to focus air pressure on your hands, setting you all aquiver. Throw in some expertly designed lighting and Tamsin Greig's voice in your ear (amongst other things) and you should come out feeling fantastically stimulated. If this hasn't satisfied your cravings for digital wizardry, you can also wire yourself up and receive a full report demonstrating how the stimuli have affected you. To all you geeks, art-lovers, and the sensually self-indulgent out there, try not tomiss out on seeing these seminal works from all sensory angles.
Tate Sensorium runs from August 26 until September 20 at Tate Britain.
Text Lily Bonesso
Film by Jessica Sarah Rinland
Music by Kit Grill