Do microchips whisper about electric trees? A research project exploring socially distanced communication and ASMR in the public space of RAUM in Leidsche Rijn, Utrecht. A lack of touch can increase the feeling of loneliness. Our brains produce less Oxytocin, colloquially called the 'cuddle hormone'. Oxytocin increases empathy and is also released through the phenomenon of ASMR. The project 'Soft Talk' or 'Do microchips whisper about electric trees?' investigates if ASMR can occur collectively in public space. The utilised material of copper has antibacterial properties and offers a lower survival rate of COVID-19 compared to other materials. It is also commonly used in audio and information technology.
The user can [ 1 ] listen and become aware of the environment, [ 2 ] whisper on a distance with other visitors and [ 3 ] leave a message for the people in the neighbourhood and the online community using speech-to-text, which is projected on the floor and streamed to the RAUM website using CCTV.
Soft Talks: In two discussion sessions with scientists, artists and curators, among others, we explored what ASMR has to offer public space from different angles. Watch the videos to hear all about the experiment and the experts' reflection on the research.
By: Jasper Zehetgruber and Marvin Unger Photo Credit, Drone Shot: Igor Roelofsen Prod. Copper Cones: Drückerei Hommel RAUM Utrecht Projectleader: Larissa Koers Curator: Rinke Vreeke Marketing, Communication: Iris Loos Website: Leonie Dijkstra Production Programming: Joost Ruijter
Soft Talks Moderator: Tiiu Meiner Panelists: Julie Rose Bower, Marijn Bril, Sigrid Merx, Dr. Giulia Poerio, James Taylor-Foster Facilities Management: Quentin Davelaar Preconception: Jacob Herrie Director: Donica Buisman Direction: Jop Japenga, Olga van Lingen, Marije Hobo, Anouk Diemel, Dennis Vlietinck Production: Dennis Mulder, Jesper Groen