Melanie Gilligan

The Common Sense

Installation of four screens in a white room
Melanie Gilligan
The Common Sense
#Escapism #QuantifiedSelf
Phase 1, 5 Episodes 2014/2015
Medium / Material / Technic
5-channel video installation, site-specific installation, 15 LED TVs, powder-coated steel tubes, wireless headphones, HD video, color, sound
Size / Duration
each 6–7 min.

Julia Stoschek Foundation e.V., Düsseldorf

Gilligan explores the way technologies change our behaviours and our bodies in the 15-part science-fiction miniseries »The Common Sense«, which was produced in three stages. The video series presents the story of a future technology known as »The Patch«, which makes it possible to share affective and physical experiences directly with other people. Around ten years later, students in a seminar room take a look back at the changes that emerged from it. The technology, which was initially launched with a great deal of optimism, did not lead to greater understanding either in people’s private life or at work, but rather merely promoted capitalist strategies of optimisation. The negative impacts of »The Patch« come to light particularly clearly, when the network fails: Since they are no longer used to being alone without the control or the feedback of the network, all the figures fall into a state of disturbance and disorientation.

In ZKM | Karlsruhe the first five episodes are presented as part of a coherent installation, each on a separate monitor, which is connected with the other monitors by means of steel tubing.