Lisa Park: Artist Uses EEG to make Emotions Visible

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I just came across an article about Lisa Park‘s work “Eunoia II” and I think it’s incredible! The New York-based South-Korean artist uses an Emotiv EEG headset that measures her brainwaves and picks up certain emotional values such as frustration, excitement, engagement, meditation. It then translates them into sound waves that become audible in real-time via 48 speakers.

Emotions become Sound Vibrations

Park makes her emotions even visible, turning her inside out and putting it on display for everybody. Atop of each one of the 48 speakers a pool filled with water translates the sound vibrations into movement. The water thus “dances” Park’s emotions. The more intense her inner world, the louder and faster the sound patterns and the movement of the water. In times of inner stillness, the sounds and movements in the 48 water pool speakers calm down too.

Eunoia II

When the artist meditates the water calms down

The greek title of Park’s work, “Eunoia” means Goodwill. The term is also rarely used in medicine to describe a healthy state of mind. The number 48 is a reference to the Dutch 17th century philosopher, Baruch Spinoza, and his definition of 48 different emotions.

Non-dualism: Spinoza and Vedanta

Spinoza became popular for his groundbreaking book “Ethics”, in which he challenged Descartes mind-body-dualism. For Spinoza, everything that exists is of the same substance, “God or Nature” (Deus sive Natura). His philosophy thus resembles the non-dualist Indian Vedantic philosophy, in which everything is Brahm.

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