It has been discovered that in a float condition the left hemi-sphere facilities of the brain are somewhat suspended and the right hemi-sphere ascends in dominance. there is also a significant change in the amount of endorphins released into our system. Endorphins actually determine what 'reality' is for each of us - endorphins, our natural opiates, are a filtering mechanism in the brain. The opiate system selectively filters incoming information from every sense - sight , hearing , smell, taste and touch and blocks some of it from percolating to higher levels of consciousness- nobody really knows what the world looks like, as David Hume observed- everybodys version of the world is slightly different.
I do not think it is an exaggeration to state that the float tank potentially offers us direct access and control over every cell in our bodies as well as access to a wide variety of states of consciousness, what it excels at is giving us information about ourselves, unlike the other tool for 'liberation' that you sit before at this very moment, the ubiquitous computer.
My work on this project has just begun but already my aesthetic experience of the world has been altered. For me the tank offers an opportunity to shrink so small that you become infinite , to move so fast you become motionless, to plummet into darkness so deep you emerge in total light.
Outside Art, Inside the Black Room
2. The Installation
4. The Eye Scan Project
5. Art and Environment
6. The S.D. Tank Vs. the 'Motor/Stimulus Deprivation' Chamber
7. The Tank as a Tool for Aesthetic Awareness
Copyright © 1996 Peter Mackay