Imagination sparks movement

Art & science collaboration

What is the link between imagination and movement? Artists
and scientists came together over a period of eight months
to discuss this question in a project initiated by Pavlov E-lab,
based in Groningen, the Netherlands, with Nathalie Beekman
as artistic director. These meetings also became the
starting point for a collaboration that led to the creation of
the interactive installation (e)motion. (e)motion premiered
during the theatre festival Noorderzon on 24 August 2012
in Groningen, the Netherlands. The team behind (e)motion
included professor of neuromechanics Bert Otten, musician
and media artist Jan Klug and cognitive neuroscientist Barbara

Moving by the power of imagination

This year, Pavlov E-Lab again presents itself at an extraordinary location. In the latest edition of the project entitled Open Mind, artists and scientists jointly investigate the way in which the power of imagination can influence movement. You enter an audiovisual arena in which questions are raised, such as: How does the brain deal with movement? How does the power of imagination influence the movements of virtuoso dancers and top sportspeople? And why does the brain fall asleep when we are no longer moving? Pavlov places the old, mechanical vision of the workings of the brain opposite the new idea of embodied cognition: environment, brain and body as a single large dynamic.

Makers | Professor Neuromechanics & Prosthetics Bert Otten, Filmmaker Dinanda Luttikhedde, Designer Michael Horsham, PhD Visual Neuroscience Barbara Nordhjem, Mediaartist Jan Klug

Artistic director Pavlov | Nathalie Beekman, Arena | Aron van Delft, Creative technique| Floris Maathuis, Production | Carla Wolbers, Graphic design| Hugomatic, Sponsors | AAS architects, Open Lab Ebbingekwartier (OLE)


The scientific installation “(e)motion” shows you funny faces of yourself you had no idea you would ever pull. When you’re looking into a mirror or camera, you will probably pull a serious face or give a fake smile, but throughout the day your facial expressions change constantly depending on the way you feel. (e)motion is an installation that enables you to manipulate a dynamic environment of sound and film using facial expressions. It’s a joint project of media artist and composer Jan Klug, professor in neuromechanics Bert Otten, and cognitive neuroscientist Barbara Nordhjem. The installation is part of a bigger project of Pavlov E-Lab, which involves artists and scientists investigating how the power of imagination “animates” our movements. Discover your subconscious funny face!

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