Tomohiro Sato: Floating Memories

  • ©, Tomohiro Sato, Floating Memories

Artist Statement:

    This work deals with the relationship between reality and the digital memory of that reality. Digital technology is changing our perception of reality and time and how we interact within this reality. “Floating Memories” is an interactive musical box where users can produce music and images when they turn the handle of this device. As in conventional musical boxes, a sheet of paper is imprinted with the musical scores and this paper is spun through the musical box’s cylinder. In addition to playing music, “Floating Memories” also plays “images” and the images and sounds are synchronised. A digital camera captures the users face and when the users turns the handle of the musical box device her image will appear projected on that sheet of paper. By turning the knob faster or slower the user can control the speed of her images coming. New images appear directly next to the cylinder while previous images, just like memories of the past, move further way and eventually dissapear at the end of the paper. The user so to speak produces the present through her interaction, while memories of the past become still images that stay visible for a while and then disappears. When the users stops turning the handle all together, the images will stop coming and all the previously recorded images will fall off the paper sheet and dissolve. Just like lost memories they will dissolve and blur. In this work, real time and virtual time, reality and imagination are juxtaposed and the user can break the time axis between now and then through her interaction. The user’s imagination is contrasted with the real time feedback felt through the physical action that results in the variability of time and the ambivalent memory of that time.