I was one of four designers working on the exhibition design for Panopticon, which was an exhibition produced by the Tasmanian College of the Arts for the Museum of Old and New Art's winter festival, Dark Mofo in 2017. I worked alongside the very talented Jonty Dalton, Taliesin Fox-Henry, and Ellie Sheridan. Below is the rationale for the design:
1. A circular prison with cells arranged around a central well, from which prisoners at all times be observed.
Whereas the panopticon is the model for external surveillance, panopticism is a term introduced by French philosopher Michel Foucault to indicate a kind of internal surveillance.
The intersection between external and internal surveillance, between the panopticon and panopticism, provides the rationale for this exhibition design. Through motifs of institutionalisation and mirrored text, the design of this exhibition seeks to exploit the natural voyeuristic tendencies of the viewer, whilst simultaneously toying with the notion that the living body installed in each cell space my be peering back at them.
It's nice to see you.
Designs © 2017 Lauren Jones, Jonty Dalton, Taliesin Fox Henry, and Ellie Sheridan.
Photography © 2017 Jess Barclay