Please do not touch

The lure of the big red button…

Joseph Popper’s instillation The Same Face is a 1:1 scale set of a drone command centre that explores the boundaries between the video game world and modern warfare. Despite its deeper meaning which questions our potential for destruction, I have been captivated by the more playful side of the piece.

While invigilating, I have found the best game has been watching people struggle with the moral dilemma of whether to touch it or not. Just as the smell of fish and chips on the beach entices us to forget our diets, the promise of the flashing red buttons were clearly just too good for some to resist.

One man said to his partner:

“I know I’m not allowed to, but I can’t resist. Who can have a red button in front of them and not touch it?”

The more we try not to do something the more it plays on our minds, and the more likely we are to give in and do it. So go on, I dare you to NOT do something mischievous today.

Lucy Bird, volunteer invigilator, HOUSE 2015