By transporting a “mimic” of the heart, outside of a participant’s body, another person can touch this very central part of the participant’s nature. In the case of “Hand to Heart”, the embodiment principle is mediated by the senses of sight, sound and touch, so the recipient participant is gifted an intimate, physical connection to the source participant.
The “Hand to Heart” project establishes a vulnerability for the participants. The two participants, source and recipient, establish a direct link between their sensory frameworks.
The source participant develops a visceral awareness of the environment’s effect upon their own physiological state and then, by extension, their conscious state.
The idea of the heart “mimic” is central to this art project because the heart has deep and abiding connections to the emotional and motivational foundational states that support judgement.
The external heart “mimic” is solidly based in robust technology. The technology amplifies the electrocardiogram (ECG) of the source participant by a rough factor of 2000. This amplified data drives light sources, audio and tactile transducers inside the heart “mimic”. The ECG is representative of the contraction of cardiac muscle, so this same contraction signal drives the activation behavior of the heart “mimic”. The link between the real heart, and the heart “mimic”, is essentially instantaneous and fully analog.