< Perception stimulation via massage >

Evaluation of the performance "Perception stimulation via massage"

Performance by Barbara Billy Bürckner on 6.7.2012 in the art-off-space “Stellwerk im Kulturbahnhof” at Kassel at the time of " dOCUMENTA (13)« and from 6.9 - 8.9.2012 at the art museum “KUNSTMUSEUM STUTTGART” within the “International Forum for Psychomotor / Performance / Interaction".

The performance was a part of the study of our individual perception of art.

Reception of art is based on our individual perception. Art perception goes within and above the whole body. The sensory organs and cultural backgrounds are responsible for perception.

I offered visitors of both art exhibitions and passers-by a foot reflexology massage for free. The performance took about 10 minutes. Besides relaxing exercises on the feet of the participants, I stimulated the foot reflex zones 1 – 6:

1 – mouth
2 – ear
3 – eye
4 – nose
5 – great brain
6 – inter brain

After the massage I asked the participants of the performance to answer five questions.

The survey of all 40 participants revealed that all of them perceived the perceptual stimulation to be pleasant. The majority of the subjects confirmed that they experienced a physical and a mental improvement of the body through the massage.

Before the massage 30% were physically and 50% were mentally tired. After the massage 52.5% felt physically and 72.5% felt mentally awake.

Before the massage 24 people said that they had already experienced art that day. 99% of the respondents wanted to experience art after the perceptual stimulation.

16 people had not experienced art before the stimulation, but 93.75% wanted to do this after the massage.

Consequently it is proved that with the stimulation of the responsible foot reflexology everyone is able to walk more intensively and it changes the body feeling. The state of exhaustion while experiencing art got lessened and participants experienced a physical-mental-balance. This calls for the inclusion of the body to our art experience to improve our understanding and perception of art.

Pictures by Barbara Billy Bürckner and Julia Rabusai.