Alongside the machine, Knowles has created a film and soundscape triggered by sensors responding to visitors to the installation. The film is composed of real auction scenes, staged auction performances and choral interludes from four very different communities.
To create the film, artist Helen Knowles attended and documented four auctions in widely different settings: prisoners at HMP Altcourse in Liverpool, attendees to the Ethereal Summit, employees at Consensys hub in NY, (a blockchain company); Mancunians shopping at Openshaw market in North Manchester, and the Russian community of central London buying cultural artefacts at Sotheby’s auction house.
Knowles evokes the auction scenes through documenting people’s clothing, – together with musician Denis Jones, they recorded cypto-currency employees, inmates, market sellers and the wealthy Russian community of the square mile singing. These choral interludes will be composed into a sensor-triggered soundscape within the work. The installation will reflect the breadth of wealth and financial power individuals in these communities have, ultimately, revealing the texture of the communities which represent such disparate economic groups.