2008-06-04

superlight


"superlight is the lead exhibition of the 2nd biennial 01sj global festival of art on the edge, the largest & most significant festival of art @the intersection of creativity & technology in america." a mouthful.

that said, this post is just a review of shih chieh huang's commissioned installation, "twilight zone," for this biennial @sjma's "superlight." more posts coming re the rest of the show & 01sj.

i was blown away by "twilight zone."

in a dark cubby, strange glowing, clicking, pulsing, moving, inflating creatures whir & spin from in front of you to the ceiling, resting in clustered pods in corners, transparent tails inflating, deflating, brushing against your face.

while there are many other techie exhibits in this show this was far & away the strongest aesthetically.

& it becomes more interesting upon closer inspection, too, as the creatures are of common parts: computer cooling fans w/built-in temperature messages that display on the spinning blades, black lights, & perhaps black light LEDs, fans reversing direction so they inflate/deflate plastic bags/tails, fans spinning soda bottles filled w/glowing liquids, that wind and unwind, movement sensors, phone answering machines that cycle through messages, power, adapters/cords, tupperware containers, zip ties...

watching & wandering through the creatures was an artistic, sacred experience for me. not kidding. i used LEDs as art materials years ago; in my halloween costumes, in my risd portfolio, @risd... so this was a powerful manifestation & inspiration to restart & find my own path w/LEDs.

i spoke briefly w/shih chieh huang. he was very down to earth, explaining the longer bag/tails were not umbrella bags/covers as i had supposed, but custom made w/a plastic bag sealer.

he was inspired from research he did @the smithsonian on deep sea creatures, the animals that live between depth zones. regardless, his creatures worked on such a visual level of abstraction that they could be deep sea creatures, or the submersibles that look for them, aliens, spaceships, metaphors for the coming singularity or just beautiful objects.

video