The Qi Project (2011)

The Qi Project is an inquiry into the nature of humanity and what it means to be human at this moment in time. I interviewed people in front of a camcorder, via postcard, email, website and telephone. The questions asked were "What does it mean to be human?" and "What is humanity?"

The Qi Project was conceived in 2005 after nine weeks of study and travel in China. The Project brings together nine years of video people watching, interviews in both written and video form, and welcomes audience participation.

First published in 2008.

Full Description

The Qi Project is an inquiry into the nature of humanity and what it means to be human at this moment in time. Qi is a Chinese word which literally means "air" or "breath." It is considered to be the circulating life force. The Qi Project exists as (1) a gallery installation (2) a website (3) a process-based intervention. The gallery installation includes: two channel video, text and audience participation. The website: represents the interventions; includes elements in exhibition; and invites participation. The intervention is the process and residue of questioning: What does it mean to be human? What is humanity? This is/was done via postcards, email, telephone, website, and in front of a camcorder. The Project was launched at The Krause Center for Innovation Art Gallery in Los Altos Hills, California in February 2008.

The Qi Project website has four areas of engagement. Read. Write. Look. Listen.

"Read" contains written responses. These are displayed randomly, not linearly, so that I as creator of the project, am not establishing a hierarchy of importance/interest; and so that each visitor to the project receives a different experience of the content.

"Write" invites the visitor to contribute to the project. Contributions are added to the "Read" database.

"Look" contains video of people moving through public spaces. Filmed on three continents over a period of nine years.

"Listen" contains the audio portion of video interviews of people discussing humanness and humanity. These are played randomly.

Work metadata

  • Year Created: 2011
  • Submitted to ArtBase: Thursday Jun 23rd, 2011
  • Original Url:
  • Work Credits:
    • Nanette Wylde, creator
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