Thursday, 3 December 2009

Careless twhisper

First of all, sorry about the pun, I genuinely can't help it, it's a disease. It doesn't even have anything to do with what I'm going to write about. 

Apology out of the way, this is a reply of sorts to Laurence from Fabrica Gallery's blog post about the game of 'Twhispers' he started a few days ago and in which I took part. 

The idea was that an initial Tweet would be passed down a chain of people, who would each change two words - a bit like the very un-PC Chinese Whispers you might have played as a child.  It was an experiment of sorts to get people thinking about the themes behind the most recent exhibition at Fabrica - Chameleon by Tina Gonsalves which featured digital portraits which responded to your behaviour and emotions by either witchcraft or technical wizardry - I'm not sure which. 

I thought it was a nice exercise on the idea of passing something on, and action and reaction, that was very much in the spirit of the exhibition and also a good way of playing up the way Twitter works and the ways people use it to communicate and share information, while imprinting something of themselves on it at the same time.  As Laurence points out, it was also free to do, and a way getting people involved by making them feel part of something. It seemed to create a bit of buzz and interest, which is great and has got me thinking about how I might be able to use something similar for a project I'm working on. 

On another level, as a lover of words, I thought it was really interesting how the Twhispers changed: 

Whisper 1 - She smiled happily at the man who had sold her the amazing shoes and he smiled back, shyly. 
Returned - She shocked everyone, for the man had given her piercingly sharp scissors, and she bled on them. 

Whisper 2 - Smile and the world smiles with you, cry and you cry alone. 
Returned - Celebrate after the river turns to custard, swim if you feel lucky 

Whisper 3 - The shouting outside in the street was making them tense 
Returned - Brown flying pterodactyls over the turkey was faked for Xmas 

The first one didn't really change too much, it got a bit darker with the mention of blood, but the structure and story behind it stayed fairly similar - an exchange takes place between a man and a woman, and basic words like she, the man, had, her, and remained the same throughout, when they could possibly have made the biggest change.  With the second one, I like that the rhythm and punctuation stayed the same, because it still sounds like a saying or motto, albeit a ridiculous one.  The third one is awesome (and the pterodactyl was my addition, not to blow my own trumpet or anything)  - it changed beyond recognition from something quite innocuous, to something utterly surreal yet seasonal and almost political too!
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Posted via email from Lauren's posterous

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