SITE-INTEGRITY: RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
Site-integrity is a working methodology, a site-specific and collaborative research practice.Through the exploration of real and representational space site-integrity investigates how technical machines can perform site, creating critical experiences for audiences that open debate and question social spaces. Recorded material is re-presented back into site using automated motorised devices, enabling an exact transfer of scale and time, bringing site and its representation into critical conjunction. Each site performance is informed, shaped and determined by the social, political, architectural and institutional discourses present in site, confronting the politics and ethics of artist fieldwork.
Non-haptic, non-temporal ways of representing place have come to dominate contemporary practice. Site-integrity implicitly performs involvements in, as opposed to observations on site. By situating the viewer in the centre of a changing live space, there is never a point of fixed representation. Doreen Massey’s For Space (2005) argues that place is un-representable, since in order to fix a representation of space one needs to extricate it from the temporal. Site-integrity builds upon this notion via an understanding of place as emergent, relational and beyond representational regimes. This focus on the ‘present’ repositions the act of representation from its retrospective or projective dimensions towards that, which is physically encountered and is experiential.
Historically, the context of this research lies in the origins of early cinema, with reference to the Lumière Brothers’ Cinématographe (the first three-in-one device that could record, develop and project motion pictures). Site-integrity differentiates from other modes of site-specific practice through a dynamic material exchange that occurs between site, artist, machine and audience. It could be argued that each site simultaneously becomes an impromptu studio space, a place of contemplation, research, action, interaction, production and event. Thinking about practice in terms of event, therefore, is not simply the unfolding of a sequence of activities within a ‘privileged’ and territorialized space of the gallery; the art experience needs to be rethought, or re-experienced, in terms of a changing live space.