An exhibition at the Holburne Museum of Art in Bath. The QWERTY installation looks at our current relationship with familiar tools of communication. A ceramic & mixed media installation exploring the part clay has historically played in cultures as a documentation and communication tool. QWERTY comments on this use of clay in historical context and mixes it with modern methods of communication, especially focusing on the computer keyboard.
KAREN THOMPSON – CLICKING WITH YOU & CIRCUIT-BOARD DOORWAY Clicking With You is exploring tactility within internet relationships. With the expansion of the internet, dating sites have become more and more popular offering intense experiences with no obvious tactility other than with the piece of plastic we are touching when we type onto the computer keyboard.
KAREN THOMPSON – RETRO KEYBOARD The ‘Retro Keyboard’ has had the plastic computer keys removed and replaced with ceramic alternatives, this is a playful piece commenting on the part clay has played in the past for recording information.
KAREN THOMPSON – CUNEIFORM TABLET (LANGUAGE QWERTY) The underside of computer keys are pushed into a slab of clay to create the impression of hieroglyphics. This piece mergers the actions of ‘pushing’ to create a document and record information. Ancient cuneiform texts were created by pushing a reed into a slab of clay, today we push the computer keys, this piece mixes the two actions creating a contemporary cuneiform tablet which has then been sawdust fired.
KAREN THOMPSON – QWERTY MORSE CODE QWERTY Morse Code is a piece which again plays with other methods of communicating in relation to the computer keyboard. Here the computer keys have been made into ceramic and then turned into Morse Code. The letters spell out ‘The Medium is the Message, Marshall McLuhan’
KAREN THOMPSON – MELTDOWN High fired porcelain computer keys replace the original keys on this keyboard, which has then been placed back in the kiln to melt together. ‘Meltdown’ questions the part that modern technology and frequencies plays in affecting our consciousness.
KAREN THOMPSON – MORSE CODE DECODERS Decoders based loosely on ancient cylinder seals. These clay decoders offer the chance to work out and decode the letters in the QWERTY Morse Code piece.
KAREN THOMPSON – QWERTY EXHIBITION SHOT