We interact with our surroundings by talking to and touching the people closest to us.
An idea propagates over large distances through a community of interconnected people.
Using the same ideas as the propagation of sound waves through materials, our installation uses an abstraction of how information passes between inanimate objects and propagates long distances.
The installation consists of spheres arranged in a grid. Each sphere is suspended via wires as an independent pendulum. When people move within this grid of hanging spheres, they are obliged to touch the spheres, they disturb them. The spheres interact with each other via direct collisions (and through vibrations, as the entire exhibit is suspended by cables).
To transform mechanical movement into light, we used a low-tech methodology, where each sphere is an independent circuit with it’s own LED and battery pack. When the sphere is displaced beyond a certain angle, the circuit closes. The mechanical information initiated by a visitor to the exhibit is thus visualized by the propagation of a chain of light.
The viewer cannot enter the space and view the exhibit without interacting with the exhibit. Through this direct contact, they intuitively experienced how inanimate objects “communicate” over long distances by propagating “information” (in this exhibit, waves of light) through the oscillatory movement of tethered objects.
The installation presents both local and global perspectives of the same phenomena. The experience begins from the local perspective, as people walk within the grid and touch the spheres. Within the space, there is an additional global perspective viewing area, where a live-action aerial view from a video camera mounted high on the ceiling is projected on the wall.