When renowned Delhi-based artist Asim Waqif approached SapientNitro for his new exhibition – Autolysis, the brief was simple. The exhibition was an exploration of decay, dereliction, abuse and subversion of materials and ideas. He wanted consumers to experience the exhibition through storytelling and technology. He wanted us to enable the exhibition to move away from the traditional medium of consuming art, i.e, through visual medium. Instead break boundaries through interactivity, creativity and technology, thus transforming the way art is consumed.
Through the exhibition, Asim challenged the increasing obsession amongst art-marketers to conserve art and heritage objects. He cited an example of an amazing collection of musical instruments at the Musee du quai Branly in Paris where a consumer is only allowed to look at the instruments. Thus, depriving the consumer the opportunity to experience the art and increasing the inability of one to make similar instruments in the future.
SapientNitro joined hands with Asim to bring alive the exhibition through micro-interactions enabled by new media technologies. Steering clear of traditional art exhibitions where a ring fence is created, ‘Autolysis’ transformed art consumption through the medium of technology.
After months of ideation, brainstorming and hardwork, on 27th January, ‘Autolysis’ was inaugurated at a 200 year old Sarai that once belonged to Bhadurshah Zafar II. The exhibition was structured to enable interactions that were subtle and layered. Keeping in mind Asim’s message of abuse, decay and the acceptance to ‘let go’, the interactions were created to deliberately frustrate and puzzle the viewer. Through embedded sensors, actuators and 3D cameras that could respond to motion, or proximity of the viewer, consumers were offered a unique experience at Autolysis. The exhibition did not provide instant gratification. Instead, through a marriage of creativity, art and technology, the exhibition made consumers question and experience the emotions and message behind the art exhibition.