PRESENT-AT-HAND

A Collection of  120 objects
Oakwood, felt, Steel
This collection is still in progress (Soon to be shown at B Galleria, Turku , FI)

On the one hand, this collection deals with the visual and haptic principles of design and aesthetics, and on the other hand, it revolves around the question of the authenticity of human interaction with objects. I borrowed the title of the show from Heidegger’s philosophy on being-in-the-world and experiencing the world through objects. 

He argues, that when the question of functionality is out of the way due to some reason, a ready-to-hand object turns into a present-at-hand object. By that, he means that when an object is capable of serving a function that it is built for, it would become transparent in the hands of the user and in the shadow of the purpose the user is pursuing. However, when something disrupts this functionality, the object would become conspicuous and reveals itself in our eyes. It is then that we would relate to that object as an alien thing that catches our attention in its own right. The object would announce its pure presence-at-hand rather than being ready as a means to accomplish a task. Thus, for me, present-at-hand refers to a rich experience of being fully present with an entity both physically and mentally.

In this regard, the idea behind this collection is to draw attention to an authentic present-at-hand experience through a series of objects. It explores questions like: How does the mind perceive the shapes when it comes to interacting with these objects for the first time? Does it try to rely on the resemblance of the shapes with a familiar object and uses it as a reference for encountering and talking about them? Or is it possible to have a nonreferential encounter with them? How much our hands can act free from the dominance of the mind while interacting with objects? And so on.

This collection includes approximately 120 objects (mostly small) made out of a combination of metal, wood, and felt. There are also 8 video performances that are about my interaction with a selection of objects in the collection.