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Exhibit Opening Reception: The Last Time You Cried

March 31, 2010 at 5:00 pm - 6:30 pm

From March 29 to April 9, 2010, The Last Time You Cried – a collaborative installation that asks how computers understand human emotions – will be on view on the second floor of the Art and Architecture Building. The opening reception for the exhibition will be March 31, 2010, from 5-6:30 p.m.

Using voice recognition software and other technological filters, The Last Time You Cried turns stories recorded by participants into poems.

The poems, which respond to the prompt, “When was the last time you cried?”, can be heard inside the installation’s listening booths. As an experiment in using computers to create meaning out of personal and moving human experiences, the project asks: What happens when humans tell their stories to computers? What can computer poems reveal about the sensitive and uniquely human act of crying?

The installation’s design takes its cue from these digital processes. The inside of the listening booth is composed from a landscape of soundwaves, forming a spatial topography that both houses and is made out of the audio files.

Sponsored by the U-M’s Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning and the MFA Program in Creative Writing, The Last Time You Cried is a collaboration between poet Tung-Hui Hu, Assistant Professor of English, and architect Vivian Lee, lecturer at Taubman College, with the assistance of information designer Gaurav Bhatnagar, undergraduate researchers Anne Markey and Zoe Iris, and volunteers from the U-M community.

After the close of the exhibition, the installation will travel to the TEDx conference at U-M’s Biomedical Science Research Building on April 10, 2010, where Lee and Hu will give a talk about the project.

For more information about the installation, lasttimeyoucried.com or contact the group at lastcried@umich.edu. For questions about the opening, contact Amber LaCroix, Communications Director at Taubman College, 734-647-7797 and lacroixa@umich.edu.


March 31, 2010
5:00 pm - 6:30 pm