Slowness in the Arts

Artists addressing slowness, duration, and acceleration

one step at a time like this

Over the past year, one step at at a time like this, an Australian theatre/performance company, has been recreating and touring a pedestrian-based ipod work, en route. It’s intention – and audience response – is that it slows / extends time and creates a heightened sensory awareness in the participant. It’s a conscious attempt to use a tool which so often is employed to create a separation between the user and their environment, to create a slower, more reflective and engaged experience.

(Submitted by Julian Rickert)

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ART IN PROCESS, is an Australian /Austrian artist team that works on the intersection of installation, video, performance and live art with a special focus on creating work that requires audiences to listen and watch for longer periods of time. Most of their video installations are over 15 min in length. Performances play with slow movements to make aware of the fast world around us, about mass consumption and wastefulness, and about how globalization influences our way of living.

(Submitted by Bello Benischauer & Elisabeth M Eitelberger)

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Speed + Networks

Derek Hales is an Architect and has been a member of the RIBA since 1992. He is recognised for his work in digital media and artist-led research and development (R&D) in work supported by the Arts Council of England since 2001. Hales’ research interest is in different readings of simulacra and in fictional worlds of art, design and architecture. Between 2006-2008 Hales worked collaboratively with architects, digital design agencies, artists, musicians and filmmakers on publicly funded R&D projects in Future Media, Future Technologies and Futures Studies. Hales returned fully to his own research, studio practice and research supervision in 2009. As Principal Lecturer in Digital Media Design, Hales is subject leader in the field of digital photography, future cinema, animation, motion graphics, interactive fiction and electronic art. He is currently a research student at the London Consortium ( Birkbeck College, ICA, Architectural Association, Tate, Science Museum) on their interdisciplinary  Cultural Studies and the Humanities programme, where he is researching Design Fictions and the speculative culture of people doing strange things with electricity. He is interested in the topic of slowness and think that it is a timely moment to reconsider speed and networks.

(Submitted by Derek Hales)

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The Slowly Project

The Slowly Project was born out of a reflection on the frenzy that constitutes the reality of contemporary life. Liuba is a performance artist who goes around the world to various cities performing a ‘slow motion’ in busy places thus attracting shocking responses from those around her. Slowness becomes a metaphor of a contrast between personal time and social time, between interiority and exteriority.

The Slowly Project – Take tour time – Moderna from vimeo

(Submitted by Liuba )

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Still Standing

Like Camille Utterback’s Text Rain and other interactive installations in its genre, Still Standing invites participants to use their bodies as reading instruments. In order to read the poetic content of Nadeau and Lewis’s installation, that is, the viewer must remain perfectly still, her stillness causing the video-projected text to assemble as if attracted to a magnet. The structure of the work, along with its poetic content, might seem to suggest that reading requires cognitive rather than bodily engagement, that stillness is a necessary prerequisite. But the activity of standing still requires rigorous muscular control, such that Still Standing serves to remind us that reading is a fundamentally embodied activity.

(Submitted by Stephanie Strickland)

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Indeterminate Hikes by ecoarttech

is an art/theory collaborative with goals to create a sense of place, calm, and stillness using digital technologies. Indeterminate Hikes, is an Android app that acts as your personal guide to ecological awareness of everyday environments. By importing the national-park discourse of sublime wilderness into local places, including suburban, metropolitan, and rural settings, and rethinking how we use mobile technologies, IH transforms unexpected places into sites of bio-cultural diversity and wild happenings.

IH slows down modern life’s pace to activate consciousness of everyday locales as ecologically diverse spaces worthy of wonder, and to transform smartphones into tools of environmental imagination.

(Submitted by Leila Nadir)

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The Right Moment

Dr. Harald Kraemer teaches at the Departement Design at Zurich University of Arts giving seminar about techiques and strategies of deceleration and slowness. By analyzing works of art, scenes from movies, poems, and writings on famous artist,  Dr. Kraemer teaches his students how to decelerate their daily speed, learn the power of slowness and how to discover their abilities in finding “the right moment.”

(Submitted by Dr. Harald Kraemer)

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Geodesic Sound Helmets

Geodesic Sound Helmets is a series of interactive and immersive personal sound environments. This project is being produced in collaboration with Ben Landau (industrial designer, Melbourne), Eva Cheng (DSP & research engineer, Melbourne) and James Laird (technical advisor & engineer, Sydney). Geodesic Sound Helmets is supported by the City of Melbourne. The research behind the project, and some previous work (such as “Noise Cancellation: disrupting audio perception“) is about re-introducing people to environmental noises. I’m interested in how individuals isolate themselves with technologies like mp3 players or smartphones (eg. listening to music on public transport).

(Submitted by Cara-Ann Simpson)

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Measure of Discontent

Measure of Discontent: Sigh Collector is a home monitoring system that measures and ‘collects’ sighs. The result is a physical visualization of the amount of sighing, for personal use in a domestic environment.

The project is in two parts. The first part is a stationary unit, which inflates a large red air bladder upon receiving the appropriate signal. The second part is a mobile unit, worn by the user, which monitors breathing (via a chest strap) and communicates a signal to the stationary unit wirelessly when a sigh is detected.

Sigh Collector from Michael Kontopoulos on Vimeo.

Measure of Discontent: Pacing Track is a home monitoring system that measures and documents nervous pacing activity. The result is a physical visualization of the amount of pacing, for personal use in a domestic environment. The purpose is to visualize the distance traversed while engaged in measured, contemplative walking.

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Inner Forests

In “Inner Forests”, a user’s shadow is augmented and expanded by the gentle growth of trees and shrubs. The longer the user stands still, the more growth occurs. If the user moves, the growth disappears quickly.

While the notion of augmenting the human form through shadow has been widely explored in new media art, what strikes me often is the frequency with which the expectation of immediate feedback and instant gratification is rewarded. With this piece, I was interested in the concept of slow interactions, interactions that take patience and investment from the user; that develop a personal relationship between the user and their shadow rather than constructs an interface where the shadow is merely a tool.

Slow interaction rewards the user for personal investment over time.

Inner Forests from Michael Kontopoulos on Vimeo.

(Submitted by Michael Kontopoulos)

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