Umělec 2002/3 >> Shadow plays in Linz (Ars electronica) Просмотр всех номеров
Shadow plays in Linz (Ars electronica)
Журнал Umělec
Год 2002, 3
6,50 EUR
Послать печатную версию номера:
Получить подписку

Shadow plays in Linz (Ars electronica)

Umělec 2002/3


Denisa Kera | media | en cs

"This year’s Ars Electronica Festival in Linz, Austria, was surprising not only for the serious and engaged art it offered — implicit in the subtitle “Unplugged” in reference to Africa and the third world — but also for the sheer number of projects that attracted the public with their light and playful nature.

Hits this year included machines and applications intended for shadow play, but with none of the latest technological sensations getting in the way. These works served
only to entertain and find new possibilities to play with any technology and situation. However their simplicity and imagination transformed what are often complex matters or boring habits into space for experimentation and surprise.
Paradoxically, it was the ordinary shadow play Body Movies by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer ( which was the most successful with audiences. This work turned a walk across the main square in the city of Linz into a memorable experience and good fun for all passers-by. With simple equipment images and light were projected on a screen covering 1,000 square meters of space, allowing people to play with their own shadows and images on the screen. Body Movies used one of the oldest technologies of entertainment — shadow theater — and simply added the collaborative and open features typical of today’s technologies. Users supplied the drama themselves on the screen, which covered the Linz city hall, as they decided how their shadows would interact while exploring the projected images on screen. The heights of the shadows ranged between two and 20 meters, depending on how far people were standing from the source of light.
The play of light and shadow, reality and image, large and small, inspired viewers to produce unbelievable theatrical and pantomime performances. At the same time it allowed them to change their habits and interact with strangers. A boring walk thus became a
real adventure in which shadows and images fought or intertwined, creating entire story lines.
These moving pictures made of human bodies and their movements were in fact a parody of Plato’s cave metaphor and the myth of confusing illusion for reality. Suddenly the illusion-shadows became more real than our everyday lives and bodies, which were ambulating around the town square. All the possibilities inherent within the shadow play became the inspiration that provoked creative and authentic expression on the giant screen. For at least a moment ordinary
people became the heroes of epic comedies and tragedies. The shadows helped people discover their hidden fantasies and dreams, something most don’t experience in ordinary life “under the sun.” In fact this simple idea changed the square into a real theater of the world.
Another project that explored the shadows was Tool’s Life by the group minim++. On a table under moonlight viewers discovered the hidden life of objects of everyday use, objects we use daily. Once again these were represented as shadows that projected what these objects were dreaming about, what they were afraid of and what other unimaginable functions they might have. When you touched the objects, their shadows related entire tales right there on the table. The objects simply came to life and took on unexpected meanings: a pretty flower grew out of a salt box; an alarm clock rang and
shadows of numbers and letters marched from within it; a faucet painted the table blue; touching a bowl of sugar caused ants to charge from every direction; a bird suddenly landed on a hammer and sang out; smoke wafted from an ashtray. And that was only the beginning. Like the human bodies in Body Movies, the objects dancing shadows at some point stopped being only copies — in fact they became more real than the
objects themselves. They showed hidden desires and dreams, and animated them. Shadow play became a means of liberating and transforming dead and boring objects into live and creative ones.
Shadows and new technologies blended in Re:mark and The Hidden World of Noise and Voice, two projects by Goland Levine and art groups. Re:mark was a project representing the human voice, particularly the moment noise becomes a word entering
into communication, i.e. system of signs. This project was in fact a certain phonographic machine for representing the voice, a shadow system of “writing,” which, unlike ordinary script, used moving shadows. Visitors could try out the machine by speaking into a special microphone. The system was capable of recognizing whether it was a noise, a vowel or an entire word, and then it represented it in shadows.
In The Hidden World of Noise and Voice, the other shadow project Levin participated in, special 3-D objects similar to shadows that represented expressive elements of voice, turned words into unique events in themselves, voice being understood here as energy rather than sign. In this project communication among people was transformed into an intense visual experience. Using
special data-glasses, a group of six people sat around a table keeping track of sounds as they were transformed into moving objects. Voices took on shape and color as the participants’ conversation turned into painted scenes or animation.
All the shadow projects at Ars Electronica linked ancient and original forms of entertainment with the latest technologies to compare the sensations and joys that such games have offered throughout the centuries. The origin of contemporary media and visual culture lies in theater of shadows. Bringing together shadow and electricity has in fact helped us understand the long journey we have traveled in order to finally
return to an ancient form of presentation and entertainment, one our ancestors enjoyed in caves: shadows.


Статья не была прокомментирована

Добавить новый комментарий

Рекомендуемые статьи

The Top 10 Czech Artists from the 1990s The Top 10 Czech Artists from the 1990s
The editors of Umělec have decided to come up with a list of ten artists who, in our opinion, were of crucial importance for the Czech art scene in the 1990s. After long debate and the setting of criteria, we arrived at a list of names we consider significant for the local context, for the presentation of Czech art outside the country and especially for the future of art. Our criteria did not…
Nick Land – An Experiment in Inhumanism Nick Land – An Experiment in Inhumanism
Nick Land was a British philosopher but is no longer, though he is not dead. The almost neurotic fervor with which he scratched at the scars of reality has seduced more than a few promising academics onto the path of art that offends in its originality. The texts that he has left behind are reliably revolting and boring, and impel us to castrate their categorization as “mere” literature.
Terminator vs. Avatar: Notes on Accelerationism Terminator vs. Avatar: Notes on Accelerationism
Why political intellectuals, do you incline towards the proletariat? In commiseration for what? I realize that a proletarian would hate you, you have no hatred because you are bourgeois, privileged, smooth-skinned types, but also because you dare not say that the only important thing there is to say, that one can enjoy swallowing the shit of capital, its materials, its metal bars, its polystyrene…
No Future For Censorship No Future For Censorship
Author dreaming of a future without censorship we have never got rid of. It seems, that people don‘t care while it grows stronger again.
04.02.2020 10:17
Следующий шаг?
out - archeology
S.d.Ch, Solitaires and Periphery Culture (a generation born around 1970)
S.d.Ch, Solitaires and Periphery Culture (a generation born around 1970)
Josef Jindrák
Who is S.d.Ch? A person of many interests, active in various fields—literature, theater—known for his comics and collages in the art field. A poet and playwright foremost. A loner by nature and determination, his work doesn’t meet the current trends. He always puts forth personal enunciation, although its inner structure can get very complicated. It’s pleasant that he is a normal person and a…
Читать дальше...
out - poetry
THC Review and the Condemned Past
THC Review and the Condemned Past
Ivan Mečl
We are the fifth global party! Pítr Dragota and Viki Shock, Fragmenty geniality / Fragments of Charisma, May and June 1997. When Viki came to visit, it was only to show me some drawings and collages. It was only as an afterthought that he showed me the Czech samizdat publication from the late 1990s, THC Review. When he saw how it fascinated me, he panicked and insisted that THAT creation is…
Читать дальше...
To hen kai pán (Jindřich Chalupecký Prize Laureate 1998 Jiří Černický)
To hen kai pán (Jindřich Chalupecký Prize Laureate 1998 Jiří Černický)
Читать дальше...
birthing pains
Who’s Afraid of Motherhood?
Who’s Afraid of Motherhood?
Zuzana Štefková
Expanding the definition of “mother” is also a space for reducing pressure and for potential liberation.1 Carol Stabile The year was 2003, and in the deep forests of Lapák in the Kladno area, a woman in the later phase of pregnancy stopped along the path. As part of the “Artists in the Woods” exhibit, passers-by could catch a glimpse of her round belly, which she exposed especially for them in…
Читать дальше...
Knihy, multimédia a umělecká díla, která by vás mohla zajímat Войти в e-shop
30 x 21 x 1 cm / 40 pages / sérigraphie 12 pass. couleur / 200ex
Больше информации...
30 EUR
36 USD
From series of rare photographs never released before year 2012. Signed and numbered Edition. Photography on 1cm high white...
Больше информации...
220 EUR
267 USD


Divus and its services

Studio Divus designs and develops your ideas for projects, presentations or entire PR packages using all sorts of visual means and media. We offer our clients complete solutions as well as all the individual steps along the way. In our work we bring together the most up-to-date and classic technologies, enabling us to produce a wide range of products. But we do more than just prints and digital projects, ad materials, posters, catalogues, books, the production of screen and space presentations in interiors or exteriors, digital work and image publication on the internet; we also produce digital films—including the editing, sound and 3-D effects—and we use this technology for web pages and for company presentations. We specialize in ...

Цитата дня Издатель не несет ответственности за какие-либо психические и физические состояния и расстройства, которые могут возникнуть по прочтении цитаты.

Enlightenment is always late.

Kyjov 36-37, 407 47 Krásná Lípa
Čzech Republic


GALLERY, +420 222 264 830, +420 606 606 425
open from Wednesday to Sunday between 10am to 6pm
and on appointment.


CAFÉ & BOOKSHOP, +420 222 264 830, +420 606 606 425
open from Wednesday to Sunday between 10am to 10pm
and on appointment.


STUDO & PRINTING, +420 222 264 830, +420 602 269 888
open from Monday to Friday between 10am to 6pm


Ivan Mečl,, +420 602 269 888


Palo Fabuš,

Arch 8, Resolution Way, Deptford
London SE8 4NT, United Kingdom, +44 (0) 7526 902 082







Divus We Are Rising National Gallery For You! Go to Kyjov by Krásná Lípa no.37.