Surfing the Semiosphere
Surfing the Semiosphere was a collaboration with Judith van der Elst, whose anthropological work looks at indigenous forms of navigational knowledge. The project has so far taken shape as two workshops, one at TodaysArt Festival in the Hague, and one at the Frankenstein festival in Arnhem. We’re speculating on the creation of technological instruments based on alternative (non-western) navigation and understanding of the natural landscapes of signs and signals, what Judith refers to as biosemiotics.
The workshop is at its core an exploration of the semiosphere, a concept arising from the marriage of sensory anthropology and semiotics that attempts to construct a culture’s worldview based on the nature and importance of sensory signals in the environment, be it natural or man-made. We created some exercises using some instrumentations we provided (biometric sensors) and those brought by the audience to use as field tools for capturing environmental signs and signals, and together try to understand the process by which sensation becomes meaning.