jeudi 11 décembre 2008

The Waves Interactive installation Thierry Kuntzel

The effect may take its own sweet time but it is gripping. Viewers, facing a screen on which a wave is shown surging forward and breaking, enter a corridor and walk towards the image, irresistibly drawn towards the swelling sea. Yet the closer they approach, the clearer it becomes that their own movement affects both the speed of the wave and the volume of the sound for the swell slows until it freezes into a black-and-white image while the sound fades to silence. Backing away, viewers then create the opposite effect.

Thierry Kuntzel, The Waves, 2003

The change is gradual and follows the pace set by the viewers’ stride, and this merging generates a certain fascination tinged with joy before a wave that is about to wash over us but which we control. The device also gives rise to a feeling of anxiety, the kind we get in a nightmare. Slowing down the image, far from reassuring us, paradoxically creates an effect of powerlessness.

The paradox in this case articulates a certain relationship to knowledge and probably to the other in terms of desire and temptation. In a marvelously poetic and effective way, it puts in play that attraction sparked by knowledge that is elusive, ungraspable, fleeting.
The Waves est sur le site:

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