In a world crowded with ideas and artists reaching for ever more extreme shock tactics to get noticed, it can be hard to blow people away with something dazzlingly simple. That’s why, artist Lisa Park‘s preformance of “Eunoia” (which translates to “beautiful thoughts” in Greek) is so remarkable, and among the few opportunities you will get to actually experience a person’s innermost thoughts and feelings via haunting sound waves. Lisa’s works with water and brainwaves as her main medium, recording her thoughts with an EEG sensor which she wears on her head during the live installation, then the recorded thoughts are used to manipulate the movement of water in real-time. The water itself becomes both a symbol, and a literal representation of Lisa’s consciousness as it lives inside her head. And as you watch her fight and stumble to completely quiet her mind, it is impossible to look away.
Though the movement of her thoughts across the water is mesmerizing, and for most spectators seeing them is the whole point of the experience, for Lisa Park the goal of the piece is to control her mind to a point when the water around her will be completely still and the room eerily quiet. Once that happens, Lisa will know that she has mastered her own mind, but until then, we basically get to watch this very personal and very beautiful struggle unfolding before our eyes. Girl vs Herself.
Park is using experimental brain-computer technology which measures eye movement, as well as her delta, theta, alpha, and beta brain waves which is sent via Bluetooth to large 24 inch black metal dishes filled with water that each sit on a speaker arranged. Each of these metal dishes represent different emotions (sadness, hatred, anger, desire, and happiness) all arranged in a circle enclosing Lisa who sits dead center. Taken together, the artist literally surrounded by her feelings and thoughts which won’t stay silent, represents a kind of unity of the human experience. It’s poetic stuff.
Lisa is was born in the US, raised in Korea and is now based in New York. Her multidisciplinary work focuses on themes of “vulnerability, confrontation, suspension, self-control, and liberation.” You can watch the video for “Eunoia” below.