Chairing debate in a virtual research laboratory: a project initiated by a NOW Festival & Vital commission at The Bonington Gallery, Nottingham - Nov 2000.

a continuing exploration and examination of the ideas process, by Ann Whitehurst.

Using various means, including discussion of virtual reality, communications, environmental science, architecture, robotics, the club scene etcetera, a techno-wheelchair, equipped for surveillance and assessment of society, culture and the environment, will be theorised. This is not 'assistive technology,' the typical association of disability and technology with it's premise of disability as deficiency in need of ameliorating intervention but the opposite. The Chair, in using a radical interpretation of disability theory, analyses and deconstructs the oppression of normality, particularly for those most burdened by it, the non-disabled. The process seeks to reveal how disabled people, by their presence of significant difference, shape society, as archetypes used in opposition to construe a falsely unified condition called normality which people, in a more or less unconscious manner, are compelled to conform to

wheelchair with overwritten text, words used to describe the ideas process Steve Benford - What AreAvatars? (946k)
Professor of Collaborative Computing at the University of Nottingham

Lisa Haskel - SMS Messages (2.4MB)

Lisa Haskel researcher, artist, activist
poses the following discussion topics too:
Communication and Contact why?
Mobile internet access -- Mobile telephony
Mailing lists and international travel
Personal and Political: elision and confusion
of private communication and political intent.
What is your "community"?
Accessing information, reading between
the lines and grow-your-own media
Accessing spaces and places -
the human assumptions behind surveillance systems
are you looking fishy or benign?
the-chair as the perfect trojan horse, perhaps?
Technology politics what is independence anyway?
knowledge, know how and control -
who are your friends anyway?
infrastructure dependence
open source - does this answer everything?
what about who knows what.
New technologies of location /
pictures from the sky- do you know where you are?
ethics and origins - military/industrial complex
(yes, that one)
flaws in the computer
modelling of social systems: check your chair!
Technology aesthetics nice, isn't it?

(The Chair at Lisa's website)






wheelchair version

wheelchair version

wheelchair version




Ann Whitehurst