Media Lab Helsinki

At Hand

At Hand is an interactive piece designed for touch screens in public space. The project is about urban gestures, micro spaces of the street and the possibility of encountering otherness. European flow of migration is its starting point, specifically the recent appearance of beggars in Helsinki’s city spaces. It asks whether we are experiencing a loss in our ability to relate to the other as a unique human being. How should we struggle against such a loss?

The project explores the experiential and expressive possibilities of multi-user touch interaction via an orchestration of intimate close-ups of gesturing hands and the dynamics of the touch interface. It is custom designed for the MultiTouch screen technology and was presented on the CityWall interactive screen installed at Lasipalatsi in the centre of Helsinki between 27.8.-24.9.2010 as part of the Media Facades Festival Europe 2010.

The project At Hand is produced for the Media Facades 2010 festival in collaboration with m-cult and MultiTouch ltd. It is co-produced by the Crucible studio, University of Art and Design / software designer Teemu Korpilahti. Its development is supported by a grant from the Aalto University Media Factory.

In her previous installations media artist Heidi Tikka has created performative visual structures, in which images are extended beyond their representational function. With the new installation At Hand, she investigates the possibility of connecting touch screen technology with the phenomenological body through performative and visual means.

At Hand in YouTube (in Finnish, multitouchfi’s channel): At Hand Taiteiden yössä 2010