Alex Davies, Daniel Heckenberg: Drift

  • ©, Alex Davies and Daniel Heckenberg, Drift

Artist Statement:


    Drift is an interactive installation in which the viewer is able to elastically manipulate time and space throughout the course of the ferry journey. The familiar guise of a sightseeing telescope is utilized as an interface that enables the user to examine their surrounding environment in a very unique manner.

    The telescope presents the viewer with a real-time 180 degree panorama of the scene. Looking forward through it to the front of the craft provides a real-time live depiction of the scene. As the telescope is panned around towards the rear, time stretches and slows enabling the viewer to fluidly examine their environment with considerable detail. As the user continues to pan further towards the rear of the vessel, time not only slows, but reverses, drifting back over the previous journey. When the telescope is aligned back along the previous course of the ferry, the user can explore the collective experiences of people traveling together across the sea. Just as our own memory is not completely under our control, the telescopic views become smeared and distorted as the dimensions of time and space interfere. The user is readily able to return to the ‘normal’ temporal state by panning back towards the front. By doing so, time elastically slides the scene back to the present.

    Drift alters individuals’ perceptions of the journey by being able to examine aspects of the past in significant detail.

    In stark contrast to the slow journey of the ferry, the flow of communication is almost inconceivably rapid. Whilst the ferry and its passengers follow a single course, broadcast transmissions move in every direction at once.

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