This page has some notes and background info on the activities and experiments we are employing for the Experience in Action project with Body Eyes and Movement (BEAM) Lab at the University of Manchester. As part of my PhD research, I ran a number of workshops on perceptual illusions (all inspired by research at BEAM Lab and conversations with Dr. Ellen Poliakoff who also acted as one of my PhD supervisors) . The workshops often used the Rubber Hand illusion (RHI) and its many variations as a starting point. I gave participants instructions and asked them to experiment with different stimuli materials and arrangements and devise new experiments of their own. I found that observing participants experimenting and playing with ideas,
In this experiment, which is now renamed the 'Alien Hands Experiment' one participant [A] places their hands under a flat-screen monitor. They then see what seems to be their own hands under the screen when in fact these are someone else's hands [B] who is mirroring their actions. The effect can be quite uncanny especially if the appearance of the hand contrast with their own [in scale, age or colour. Participants work together to lead or mirror the movements of what appears to be their own hands under a screen. After a short time, participants experience strange sensations which oscillate between a loss of agency over their own hands and feeling agency over someone else's hands. Action Intention Paradox uses a
Workshops at Manchester City Art Gallery The aim was to deliver an engaging fun activity for all the family which related to the theme of the body and ideas around perception illusion referencing the Leonardo show as well as the Bridget Riley drawings in the Gallery. The workshop was open as a drop-in open to the general public and over the 8 days, we had around 800 people take part in total. The workshop served as an introduction to the idea of ‘perceptual and multisensory illusions’ and was based around my Clay Hand Experiment. I asked participants to work collaboratively to create their own hands and 'unfeasible objects 'with which to perform their own experiments on each other. It provided a
I have previously posted about the original 'rubber hand illusion' in which participants are convinced a fake rubber hand is their own. A classic low tech experiment that can help us "understand how sight, touch and “proprioception” the sense of body position, combine to create a convincing feeling of body ownership, one of the foundations of self-consciousness (Nature 1998, vol 391, p 756 )” Further to this research recent studies have gone on to experimentally induct of out of body experiences or create body swap illusions. [ Henrik Ehrsson and Olaf Blanke http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2007-08/ucl-foe081407.php ] Between these two experiments, several interesting versions of hand-related experiments also exist which demonstrate the plasticity of our body perception... The Alien Hand Experiment first created in the 1960s predates the Rubber hand experiment, seems more 'trick'