Harbinger Consultants

Culture + Complexity + Change

PROJECT | Long Time, No See?

leaving behind

Our involvement with the Long Time, No See? project also continues.  Long Time, No See? is a multiplatform, interdisciplinary and participatory artistic project that explores ideas of futuring, care and dialogue. The project, funded by the Australia Council’s Broadband Arts Initiative, invites participants to set out to explore and reflect, in the spirit of adventure, to reveal other and emergent ways of existing in this world through poetic actions and relationships that animate a sense of care.

On the weekend, Harbinger’s Linda Carroli, as participation designer and writer, joined project Artistic Director Keith Armstrong to deliver a workshop and walkshop in Noosa. The workshop was presented by Noosa Biosphere at CQU Noosaville. The participants were faciliated in some intensive talking before heading off on the walk. This was the first time the project’s revamped website and app were used with great success. Most users reported ease of access, although there were some iPad glitches. The Field Book, however, was as reliable as ever and some participants used these to document their journeys!

The walkshop, designed by Linda, has undergone some refinement and rethinking. While the project includes a workshop outline for delivery by the project team or DIY, it is not always suitable for the participants. It provides a narrative arc for the workshop that draws participants into dialogue about futuring and care. In Noosa, we had the opportunity to improvise and experiment to facilitate a dialogue process that was led more by the participants. This process is based on the work of David Bohm, who proposes “that a form of free dialogue may well be one of the most effective ways of investigating the crisis which faces society, and indeed the whole of human nature and consciousness today. Moreover, it may turn out that such a form of free exchange of ideas and information is of fundamental relevance for transforming culture and freeing it of destructive misinformation, so that creativity can be liberated.”

We realised that the workshop program needs to be redesigned in way that addresses Bohm’s ideas more purposefully, recognising the limitations of time. The idea of social dialogue is more compelling than ‘workshop’ as it encapsulate a sense of exchange in which, as Bohm suggests, “a group of people can explore the individual and collective presuppositions, ideas, beliefs, and feelings that subtly control their interactions. It provides an opportunity to participate in a process that displays communication successes and failures. It can reveal the often puzzling patterns of incoherence that lead the group to avoid certain issues or, on the other hand, to insist, against all reason, on standing and defending opinions about particular issues”. It’s not about reaching consensus and highlights the need to be cognisant of mindset, listening and learning to work across difference.

It’s not as simple as having a conversation and requires both stillness and probing. However, in the brief time we have for our workshops/dialogues, it’s not always possible. The process does, however, draw people into interrogation, sensemaking and questioning rather than driving towards solutions. It plants the seed and hopefully imprints the idea that other ways are possible.


The walk was guided by the participants over a two kilometre stretch through bushland on the hospital grounds to an historic Aboriginal site, which featured large stones arranged in the shape of the Rainbow Serpent. Here one of the participants shared her knowledge about the site as everyone listened and learned. Our friends in Noosa are now planning to develop their own iteration of the dialogue and walk in the near future.


Also, QUT’s The Cube will present Long Time, No See? in July, launching at an open day on 5 July, then running for the next two years. The Cube is one of the world’s largest digital interactive learning and display spaces dedicated to providing an inspiring, explorative and participatory experience of QUT’s Science and Engineering research.

How to participate? You can do your own walk and contribute your reflections for the future by downloading the Long Time, No See? iPhone app. The app will guide you through your walk, giving you things to think about while assembling your responses (photographs, audio recordings, notes) along the way. You can do your walk individually or with others. The shape of your walk is then drawn as an island on a map that you can explore both online and on The Cube (from 5 July).

From the launch, you will be able to see your walk on The Cube screens and explore contributions by participants. The project team of Long Time, No See? will also be on site to answer questions and guide you through the project.

You can participate in Long Time, No See? and your contribution will be available for others to see at The Cube and online. If you plan to join in on 5 July, please download the app before you arrive. To view your walk at the launch you will have needed to complete your walk before 4 July.

While visiting The Cube, you can also see The Virtual Reef, a life-sized and simulate marine ecosystem, and the Data Wall, which visualises layers of local data in real time. Like Long Time, No See? both projects visualise data and scientific knowledge to generate interactive experiences for visitors.

When: 10am-1pm, 5 July 2014
Where: QUT Gardens Point campus, Science and Engineering Centre (P Block)
Suitability: All ages; children will need assistance to contribute


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