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Mini Living Machine

This work was inspired by a 1969 Mini Cooper I had.  I loved driving it because I could feel the machine. I could feel the joints of the gears, hear and smell fuel combusting and sense the terrain through its rigid, low suspension. I also liked being able to understand the mechanics and being able to make the more simple repairs. There was something practical, accessible and recyclable about it.  As it entropied with age, parts were re-honed and replaced. People from all walks of life would stop me in the streets with “mini” stories - of baby bassinettes in the passenger seat – of family holidays with kids stacked in the back – of races at Bathurst, police vehicles and movie scenes. There was something about the mini that bought up memories of fully lived experiences. I realised overtime, that there was another deep rooted or subconscious attraction to my mini. It reminded me of my childhood in Africa – the smell of grease, oil and 60’s vinyl smelt like my family’s Land Rover. I used to watch my father make repairs, fascinated by parts like the ball joints of the gear stick and the steering rack. We went on many Safaris in that car and journeys into the bush made me feel quite small in the scheme of nature. At the same time I could see patterns that connected us – I felt related to monkey families as they groomed each other and amongst other things, I recognised technology (car parts) in the decaying bones of animals that had been killed by lions or other predators. My childhood experiences have shaped me in such a way that I view humans as part of larger spectrum that is more than the sum of its parts and certainly not like machines. I see machines as derivations of life patterns that can either enhance or numb our sense of life. A sense of life that is founded in the stories we live in using and making them. There is something about experiences that are fully lived and broaden our sense of awareness and being (I’m not sure hours sitting and doing in front of computers does this).  It makes sense to me that this is where we should be heading with our relationships with machines and technology? Perhaps, as we embrace the inconsistencies of our creations we can expand our sense of being and our place in complex systems where we simultaneously entropy, live within and draw ideas from?

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