Space is the Place

I'm taking a project course with Max Neupert called "Space is the Place". He's been introducing a lot of satellite based works and to contrast that, some other worldly takes on outer space, such as the Sun Ra movie that gives the title to the course... psychedellic as hell!

I'm not so into getting obsessed with the big technologies being used for outer space exploration, but I did take a course in Montreal a few years ago about geology on the planets and the most striking thing I can remember is that the professor kept teching us things and then at the end of the lesson he would always say "but all this is only speculative, we really don't know all that much about space and we base our theories on uncertain things"...

Following this lead, I started to think about how space is often something that lives inside our imaginations, how there is a great idea about space, but I'm not really sure where we got this idea.

One common thing I hear is people saying "the whole situation was SO weird, it was like being in outer space!"

Obviously, none of us really know what its like to be in space, but sometimes when we can't orient ourselves, we relate to outer space.

On a kind of side note, I checked out Alice Micelli's artwork taking place in the disaster area of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor meltdown (contaminated "exclusion" zone). I started watching some documentaries on the disaster and noted 2 things:

1. the burnt, cleared and radiated areas look like a kind of 'desert', not unlike many gravel pits, mines, dumps and forest fire areas, kind of like a moon landscape

2. in the documentary, people frequently mentioned that they felt like they were 'on another planet/ in outerspace'... it seems like when their bodies felt disoriented because of the appearance of the place, the heavy radiated air that tasted like metal, the heat from the reactor burning and the strange quiet, nothing was familiar and there was a common tendency to feel very far away from the known planet

Link to Alice Miceli's research and artwork about the Chernobyl Disaster

you can find the Dicsovery Channel documentary and much other info...

AND SO... I decided not to obsess about disaster for the moment, but to rather take a shot at another aspect of location/outerspace relation... that of frontier... the distance ahead of one and what one might go towards.

I have started to work on the screenplay for a kind of metaphoric video image... it will move but does not really have any progression, so I see it more as a single image.

keywords: space, frontier, dreams, dispersion, forward, ahead, distance, pathway, vibration, waves, western, cowboy, horse, self, psychedelia, utopia, horizon, beyond

Moving forwards towards towards a frontier.

I will produce a machine for self video recording and then film a short video metaphor.

The image will include a horse walking alone into the distance. In the image, a large rope, visibly attached to the camera point will lead towards the horse, as he is pulling the camera, filming himself.

I will construct a specialized cart for holding and stabilising the camera and a harness for attaching this cart to a horse. The horse will be instructed to walk in a straight line along a road in the countryside. The cart will be made of wood, well oiled.

The music for the video will be an adaptation of Grace Slick's 1980 solo song Dreams. The voice part of the original song will be written into a score for cello and recorded especially for this video.


Stage 1

* designing the camera cart
* training the horse
* testing video equipment and lighting(outdoor conditions)
* looking for a shooting location (stright country road)

Stage 2

* writing the score for the music (musician)
* playing and recording the music

Stage 3

* testing the cart for speed and stability, modifying
* recording the video, editing
* presentation

So maybe it will be called : Dreams : in the direction of the frontier

some links:
Dispersion Relation, wikipedia
Frontier, wikipedia

text I read recently from the Leonardo Electronic Almanac special edition on Dispersive Anatomies:
Sandy Baldwin, "Introduction: the Anatomy of Dispersion

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