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Ep. 10: Collective Embodiment, Digital Intimacies, and Body Intelligence ||

Part One with Ghislaine Boddington

On Apple Podcast Now!

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We find ourselves in unprecedented times. Social distance and self-isolation have shown us the importance of physical closeness, and the urgent need to recreate it in some form. Today's guest, Ghislaine Boddington, is here to share more about her work. With a focus on collective embodiment, she envisions a unique future of an internet of bodies, bound by sensors and implants, tele-intuition, and dissolution of the boundaries between physical and virtual. In the world we now find ourselves in, Ghislain’s advocation for the entire body in the development of telepresence and virtual communications is more relevant than ever. She is an award-winning speaker, curator, and director, specialising in the future human, body responsive technologies and immersive experiences. She is also the Co-founder and Creative Director of body>data>space. Ghislaine co-presents bi-weekly as a Studio Expert for BBC World Service Digital Planet and is also a Reader in Digital Immersion at the University of Greenwich. In this episode, we discuss her influences and how her background in dance has shaped her understanding of the body. We talk about the Collective Embodiment event she’s hosting in conjunction with Nesta and how it fits into the work they do. Ghislaine has always believed that technology should develop with the body as the main driver, rather than being an afterthought. She shares some of the work that she has done with coders to get them out of their heads and into their bodies, which ultimately makes for a more intuitive product. These interdisciplinary projects are where Ghislaine thrives. Bringing seemingly disparate disciplines together, it becomes even clearer that the body is truly the universal language and one we could all become more fluent in. Along with this, we discuss digital intimacies, the Internet of bodies, and the importance of a body language expert on product development teams. Be sure to tune in today!

Key Points From This Episode:

  • Learn about Ghislaine’s background and her areas of interest, like collective embodiment.

  • Some ways that collective embodiment is used to address political and freedom issues.

  • Find out more about Ghislaine’s Collective Embodiment event in conjunction with Nesta.

  • body>data>space’s organisational structure and some of the projects that they work on.

  • Pain points Ghislaine has encountered in the cross-sectoral body/tech collaboration space.

  • Body language is universal in a way that verbal communication often falls short.

  • Some of the most rewarding projects Ghislaine has worked on throughout her career.

  • Why getting coders back into their bodies creates more intuitive, easily adopted technology.

  • The role that technology plays in intimacy and bridging the space between physical distance.

  • Ghislaine’s Internet of bodies, and the work she’s doing to create a space for bodies digitally.

    Does digital technology fill the space when we can no longer physically connect?


“The development of technologies around us at this period of time, digital technologies, is not negative, but needs to be utterly related to and fed from and complementary to our living bodies work for us and help us and enhance our lives.” — @GBoddington [0:12:26]

“We're so educated to think in boxes that people are fearful of going beyond their box.” — @GBoddington [0:15:53]

Links Mentioned in Today’s Episode:

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