with MYRNA AYOUB, HANNAH COHEN, and MIKE JOHNSON; instructor KRZYSZTOF WODICZKO
Exposure is a didactic tool by which to structurally and historically autopsy an architectural space. Here, Exposure has two ambitions: (1) to intervene against Memorial Hall’s alienating spatial divides by exhibiting the hall as a transparent space; and (2) to disclose the Hall’s history both public and private, celebrated and suppressed.
Exposure takes the form of an acrylic viewing chamber stationed on the south side of Gund Hall facing Memorial Hall. Viewers look through the mounted eye-frame on the side of the chamber facing Gund Hall. Their line of sight passes through the interior of the chamber and then out through the transparent back towards Memorial Hall. This direct line of sight, then, is enhanced by two programs, one perspectival and one historical, on screen-like acrylic sheets mechanized within the box.
A program of perspectival images printed onto said acrylic sheets cut into the brick exterior of Memorial Hall such that the viewer can, from a fixed perspective point, see into a specific space locked within. A separate program of screens – here, acrylic sheets etched into with collages of historical images – functions by the same mechanics as the perspectival program but illuminates different content. They use collaged imagery to evoke the aura and history – and often, a controversial history at that - of different spaces within the Hall.
That the viewer separately manipulates perspectival images and historical content alike into their line of sight is highly significant to the Exposure’s critical ambitions. The strength of Exposure’s design lies in its being a kinetic object wherein the viewer can physically manipulate space (perspectival imagery) and time (historical imagery) into their field of vision. In so doing, Exposure asserts itself as a sort of active memory-device by which to capture anew the true history of Memorial Hall. Our project’s physicality specifically precludes the sense of embodied estrangement against which it tasks itself.
Cambridge, Massachusetts; 2014