The Users’ Body and Their Digital Representation in Interactive Installation- a Mereological Perspective

  • Sonia Emilia Mihai Ph.D Center of Excellence in Image Studies, University of Bucharest, Mihail Moxa 5, Bucharest, Romania, 010961
Keywords: digital self, embodied self, interactive art, interactive installation, mereology, ontology, users


This article examines the relationship between the users’ body and its digital representations in digital body interactive installations, a sub-category of digital interactive art. Due to the reflective capacity of the interfaces incorporated in these artworks, the researchers designate the connection between the body and its digital embodied image as identification, or self- identification, terms which are not contextualized and detailed, leading to theoretical misinterpretations. To approach the problem, we use an ontological branch of study- mereology, and we discuss the membership of the body within the interactive system and the connection between the users’ body and the digital embodied self: component-integral relationship, functional, mandatory, and configurational, separation, encapsulation, and exchange relationships. Afterwards, we use the composition as identity thesis to show that instead of identification or self-identification, we characterize the connection between the users’ body and the digital body as “partial, temporary and stationary exchange” based on active engagement, self- consciousness, and body awareness. The relevance and novelty of the article tackle two directions: first, the interdisciplinary combination of logical philosophy and digital art, and secondly, the lack of ontological explanations regarding the structural relations in digital interactive art.


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