Simon Farid: Week 4 - Adding to BATLIC's Visitor Count

Posted on Feb 09, 2015 by Simon Farid  | Tags: Simon Farid  | Comments (0)

In our second week collaborating together in the studio, Lily and I focused a bit more on the question raised earlier about quantifying engagement, which quickly developed into a plan for an investigation into mechanisms for counting visitor numbers, apparently the primary method of art engagement quantification. 

The first thing we did was visit the Hatton Gallery, to take a look at how their laser visitor counters were positioned. 

I have only began to notice them in galleries since working FoH at BATLIC. There, they look a bit like this: 

but sadly at Hatton they look like this: 

They did have automatic BATLIC-esque ones on the entrance doors, but the attendant told us they had stopped working, and that manual ones are more accurate anyway. Having learned little from our offsite investigations, we returned to the studio and began planning a performance that would look to tie together these different themes. 

What we came up with is provisionally called:

'Adding 40 Visitors to BATLIC's 2015 Visitor Total by Walking In and Out of Lima Golf 3 40 Times While on Shift on February 9th 2015'

The title neatly describes the performance, one that seems to fulfil the initial criteria I set myself; a performance that would remain covert, yet still have a cultural impact. And this impact here could be quite measurable. An extended performance of this nature could effect BALTIC's funding streams. 

There are, of course, still questions of documentation with this plan, both in terms of how (and if?) we might present this (an installation of a plan, or account, alongside previous BATLIC visitor totals? A re-enactment? Just this blog?). Of course, contingent documentation of the work would appear in BATLIC's next published visitor total. Previous totals can be seen here: 

or here. My next post will include some kind of report about this performance.


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