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Louise O'Boyle - Non Liquet (it is not c

Louise O'Boyle

Non Liquet (it is not clear)

In this body of work, Louise O'Boyle wanted to demonstrate, explore and record the fluid impact of data on the self as a form of narrative, while also reflecting on the fetish straits associated with self-tracking practices. Do these generated narratives really inform our understanding of our lived experience? How do concepts & terminologies around personal data make sense?

This body of work is entitled ‘Non Liquet’. A term that originates in Roman law and literally translates into English as ‘It is not clear’. It refers to a complex legislative situation where a court cannot reach a clear decision on a case due to the absence of suitable law or the injustice of the legal consequences.


“The question of whether or not a judge is allowed to declare a non liquet is rooted deeply in both legal and political theory, and the different answers given reflect various natural law and positivist schools of thought.” *


The complexity of data and information available and continuously generated about us and our environments can depict an intricate and unceasing thread of discourses rather than conclusions. So what is there to see?

*Fastenrath, U., Franziska, K. (1991), Lücken im Völkerrecht: Zu Rechtscharakter, Quellen, Systemzusammenhang, Methodenlehre und Funktionen des Völkerrecht, Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.

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Louise O'Boyle's arts practice focuses on the interdependent relationship between emotional and physical well-being. Her current work includes challenging attitudes towards mental ill health and the promotion of emotional well-being through socially engaged research and an eclectic practice of videos, performance and sculpture. In tandem, she is passionate about creating visual narratives informed by bio-ethical discourses on end of life care in the articulation of patient narratives as they live through the process of dying.

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