Fabricating FACTs

Exploring digital fabrication and prototyping in audience engagement to examine the relationship between objects and stories

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This audience engagement activity was developed by researcher Bettina Nissen and curator Gabriella Arrigoni in collaboration with FACT Liverpool as part of the exhibition‘Under Black Carpets’ by artist Ilona Gaynor. We designed a set of interconnected activities alongside the exhibition which was inspired by some of the issues inherent to the exhibition, namely the idea that the public itself become the jury, in charge of examining and interpreting the evidence presented; the practice of fabricating evidence and the relationship between objects and narrative.

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An ‘evidence collection kit’ that visitors received included several forensic tools which they could use to investigate the evidence in the exhibition and to create individual stories of the narrative the visitor wanted to tell through the evidence on show. We invited the audience to become investigators in their own right, examining the evidence in the exhibition, collecting new material with tools generally used in forensic studies and fabricating tangible traces of their individual experience. With this project we are exploring the potential of digital fabrication and prototyping in audience engagement and examining the relationship between objects and stories; what stories objects can tell and how stories can inform the fabrication of new objects.

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In order to collate these activities, we have set up a blog collecting evidence gathered, interpreted and fabricated by visitors to the exhibition and the stories these may tell can be found at www.fabricatingfacts.tumblr.com. Here is also a video documentation of this workshop by the talented Carlos Marfil.