Haptic Secrets

How does bodily communication connect us when words cannot?   In an experiment, two benches were built to translate audible frequencies into inaudible ones, delivered through powerful pistons along bench braces.  Exhibited at the Boston MFA, we took over Gallery 175 for 6 hours of vibrations–infrasound crying, telling inaudible secrets, heartbeats and more, for an entirely embodied experience.  Project realized with Adam Horowitz, Gershon Dublon, Rebecca Kleinberger, Nicole L'Huillier, Juan Necochea and Xin Liu.

Can we tap into the embodied knowledge of flesh?  Inaudible infrasound communication <20 Hz is a method of communication throughout the animal kingdom, and infrasound vibration is known to have pronounced emotional effects on humans. What can vibrations shake loose within us?

This Boston MFA show folds this nascent science question into a question of relation and experience, to audience and one another. How to make each other feel.

Sit on the bench and be shaken by a heartbeat. By laughter, and sobbing, and Beyoncé’s Partition. DJ orgasms. Sit across from a lover, and whisper secrets into the microphone, translated into vibrations. Let them feel what you cannot bring yourself to say to them. Make them feel.

Many thanks to Council for the Arts at MIT for supporting, and the MFA Boston for hosting us.  Description by Adam Horowitz.