This reflection looks at the last component of Ambiguously Human, the installation. My reflections on the films series are here: Wall-E, Ghost in the Shell, The Stepford Wives, and Ex Machina.
Much of my own thoughts on the installation can be found in the interpretive text (available on the Installation page). Experiencing the installation itself over the months it was on view, and having many conversations with visitors on it, did prompt several new connections in my thinking about it. I’ll highlight a few of the most interesting ones.
I curated this installation to prompt viewers to thinking about the separation of “human” as opposed to “object” as a spectrum rather than a binary. The works were selected because they asked that question to some degree. In discussions about the Humanized Objects I talked a lot about my experiences with the Puppet Patterns and the currency as pieces that really helped form the installation and deepen my thinking. They’re both things I’m familiar with in my own life; I’ve had paper dolls (even if not paper puppets like these) and I use currency (if not the specific ones on view). Seeing them a museum context helped me to think more about the visual qualities of dolls and money, and to critically engage with their uses.