Poll Dance

Poll Dance is a multifaceted project that looks at option polling in our society.

Statistical information is integral to everything from how people think about foreign policy to which movies we should see (with opening box office figures a critical arbiter of a film’s quality). Statistics and data shape how people know the world, however important moral and social questions often get subsumed and molded by opinion polls.

Frequently, information is spun to suit the interest of those presenting the information. Ideas and questions presented as data and opinion polls have the authenticity of being reduced to numbers and often the information in these polls is actually true. But larger and more fundamental questions are lost in what is presented–for example, regardless of what percentage of Americans support the war in Afghanistan, it doesn’t turn this into a just war, discuss the effects of the war, or express how Afghanistanis perceive it.

Poll Dance is a conceptual project that explores statistics and polls and their use in society. It is a clinical, analytical and sometimes humorous presentation with three components.

  1. A set of graphs and charts based on polling information divorced from the question that was asked. For example a pie chart with data: very worried 10%; Not too worried 36%… What the respondents were concerned about remains unknown?
  2. A series of pie charts based on statistics about our society with that information inverted from how it would typically be presented: 89% of young African American men are not in prison, etc.
  3. An ongoing survey which is conducted both online and with the audience at the Bowery Poetry Club. Charts of the information are prepared and displayed throughout the run of the exhibit and are available online as well.