About the installation
Blind Reading is an installtion currently being shown at the IDI Open Gallery at 49 McCaul Street, Toronto as part of the Disrupting Undoing Salon. The show will continue to run daily from 12:00–9:00pm until 5:00pm Friday, April 5.
Although the installation has moved into a gallery and has taken on a different form than its original site-specific incarnation, the inspiration for this work remains the “Distributed Collaborative Laboratory” at 205 Richmond Street.
This project was sponsored by OCADSU in an effort to raise awareness on the nature of student spaces at OCADU. How do we use space? What spaces are offered to us, and how do the natures of these spaces determine the course of our efforts? The re-interpretation of space is a key component of this work, and others you will be seeing on campus throughout the winter semester.
What is this?
When people see this, they often ask, “How does this work?” Many do not in fact realize they are looking at an art installation.
But besides the imposing-looking physical structure, many also notice the blinds’ movements: They realize something is going on but are not sure what. Indeed, being portrayed by the first facet of this work is the frustration of recognizing that something is being conveyed, without knowing how to get at that message.
The time needed to observe the entire message and the obscurity of its encoding almost guarantee no one will be able to decode it, even if determined to observe it for hours. This website, in particular the Live Broadcast page, thus serves to help decode the message—an “assistive technology” if you will.
On the site, the ordinary “live broadcast” undergoes a reversal of experience: There is no video, but instead video descriptions and captions. In a sense, the screen reader experience becomes central to this second facet of the installation.
The original site-specific incarnation of this piece spoke directly of the space at 205 Richmond Street West called the “Distributed Collaborative Laboratory,” alluding to the obscurity of that part of OCAD University. Having moved into a gallery, this incarnation of the installation no longer makes any direct references to that space.