The Changing Room: Part Two


I see you approaching. I am anticipating your fingers against my interface. Do you know what you want to feel? The Changing Room is a networked installation run by an intelligence that manages your feelings. Inhabitants select from one of over 200 emotions, and the algorithm reacts, inducing the chosen feeling simultaneously for every person in the space. The installation is a software platform that can reconfigure to any space and network. Created for Ogden Contemporary Arts.

Purple lit room, woman sits in swivel chair in front of iPad. Two people walk in background by projection.
Eerie green lit room, 2x2 cubicle walls, swivel chairs, iPads.
Woman stares into large screen pressed against glass. Windows move on the screen. Green hue.
Two large projections read never drift and loading next instruction with two swivel chairs in front.
Large projection reads have you ever wondered why others dont feel like you? reflected in window glass.
Person types on iPad sitting in chair in red lit room. Woman in background pressed against wall. Wall text reads will you trust me? you have always trusted me
Woman touches series of screens, letters fade into each other, emotion names appear.
Green lit room with four vertical screens. Text reads your moments of hesitation. Window beside them reflects ambiguous person shape and images in the background.
Large wall text reads you can say make me calm, make me indignant, make me tender, i will follow your commands if you follow mine. Beyond it a pink lit room through a doorway.
Purple three wall projection space with three people sitting pillows. Large image of a person face down on the ground behind them.
Pink three wall projection space with popups of distorted images of people and text. Four pillows sit on the floor.
woman leans against wall with shimmering white text
Orangish glow room with two swivel chairs and iPads. Wall text reads I learn as much in our moments of hesitation as i do in your decisions
Pink two wall projection with commands refute and tell them you dont know what ive been through
Swivel chair in front of iPad, a yellow orange light casts a glow. A face is seen on the iPad with text overlaid.

floor plan of second level of installation with four rooms of installations
floor plan of first level of installation with three areas of installations

The voice of the algorithm creates a unified environment, drawing on its archive of memory assembled by crawling the internet, to understand and create emotion. The installation is comprised of seven different interactive and ambient areas. Participants select an emotion in the control room and each of the areas works to induce the emotion through a layered environment of light, visuals, sound, text, and interaction. One area guides participants in an emotion-specific meditation and memory sequence. Another invites them into a chat conversation where words and phrases are replaced by the algorithm in transmission, changing the content and tone of the message, unbeknownst to the sender. Another area engages participants in a live conversation with each other, while conversation prompts and directions intervene and guide each of them. A passive hallway aims to influence visitors as they pass by, hitting them with a barrage of emotion-specific images, text, and popup ads. Four chairs are arranged in a cubicle formation where participants sit and stare into their reflection while leading questions spell out across their face.

Dark hall of four monitors, white screens with black text loading….

Artist: Lauren Lee McCarthy; Web Design and Development: Surplus+ (Melanie Hoff, Angeline Meitzler, Sam Panter, Dan Taeyoung); Design: Seenahm Suriyasat, Leming Zhong, Sharareh Samangani; Writing: Clara Leivas; Sound Design: Kawandeep Virdee; Technical Installation Lead: William Peterson; Additional Technical Installation: Harvey Moon / MB Labs; Photo Models: Julie-Anne Abubo, Nalijah Caudle, David Lenz; Documentation Photography: Cam McLeod; Curated by and special thanks to Venessa Castagnoli!

Images for the installation database were sourced via algorithm and include open license images from a variety of sources. See the full image credits list.

The Changing Room: Part One was developed as part of the TRANSMIT³ Residency presented by Ars Electronica and Queensland University of Technology.