Thresholds of the Mind

Thresholds of the Mind documents the research work being carried out at The Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science, Sussex University, UK and the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics, Nijmegen, Netherlands.

The Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science seeks to unravel the complex brain mechanisms that generate consciousness through a variety of techniques, including the use of a hypnagogic scanner and adapted Oculus Rift Goggles. Augmented reality environments are created in order to investigate Interoception (awareness of bodily states), Proprioception (awareness of how our body is positioned in space) and Out of Body experiences.

The Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics researches the psychological, social and biological foundations of language and is at the forefront of interdisciplinary research into the foundations of language and communication. At the institute are a variety of research labs, including EEG Labs, Behavioural Labs, Gesture Labs and VR Labs, studying the key research topics of the neural and genetic basis of language, language comprehension, production & acquisition, and culture & cognition.

The theme of consciousness and psycholinguistics, how we explore and understand the world around us on a physical, psychological and cultural level, brings into question the nature of perception of the objective and subjective sense of self. I am interested in the overlap between the science of mind and the psychology of self. I am also keen to question the ambiguity of the documentary image: the test subject can appear less human, more robotic, despite the fact that the scientific enquiry is aimed at discovering what makes us human.

We are at the threshold of crucial understanding that will have radical implications in terms of how we see ourselves and how we perceive the world around us. These experimental research methods have a vast range of clinical applications, including psychiatry and robotics. More to the point, it questions the ‘reality’ we live in and even what we mean by mental health. The exponential growth of technology twinned with the development of science in key areas which all interlink, particularly genomics, brain science and AI technology, will have a huge impact on the world we live in. David Deutsch says that knowledge has infinite reach and is a source of almost unlimited power in the universe. Thresholds of the Mind is a photography project documenting research centres that are at the forefront of this scientific research, asking the questions of what it means to be conscious, sentient and human. 

 

 

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Test Subject, Faraday Cage, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Test Subject / Research Assistant , Faraday Cage, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Test Subject / Research Assistant, EEG Cap, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science 

 

 

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Test Subject / Research Assistant, TMS/EEG, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science  

 

 

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Professor Anil Seth, Professor of Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Test Subject, VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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Self Portrait, VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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 VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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Researcher wearing a virtual reality helmet, VR  lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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Dr Charlotte Rae, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Professor Sarah Garfinkel, Psychiatry and Consciousness Science, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Professor Hugo Critchley, Chair in Psychiatry (Honorary Consultant), Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Dr Keisuke Suzuki, Research Fellow, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Dr Lionel Barnett, Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

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Professor Peter Hagoort, Director of the Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

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Recording Equipment, Gesture Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

Max Planck VR Projectors x 3

 Projectors, VR Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics (montage)

 

 

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Researcher, Behavioural Lab, Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics

 

 

Thresholds of the NMind - Stephanie with Hypnagogic Scanner diptych (high res)

Test Subject, Lucia high powered Stroboscope, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science

 

 

Thresholds of the Mind ` Kelsuke with Goggles & Screen Diptych

Dr Keisuke Suzuki, using adapted Occulus Rift Goggles and Augmented Reality

 

Thresholds of the Mind ~ Dummy Hand diptych (website)

 

 

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 Augmented Reality, Simulated image through adapted Oculus Rift Goggles

 

Thresholds of the Mind ~ Puzzle Box Diptych

 

 

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Test Subject, Sussex university Campus

 

 

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Professor Anil Seth, Professor of Cognitive and Computational Neuroscience, Sackler Centre for Consciousness Science 

 

 

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