Light from Another Time

Film projection, canvas, audio,
Macintosh computer.

“Light from another time” is what we are seeing when we watch a film.

The artwork is an installation of seven canvas and wood projection screens hanging from the ceiling. (A version on stands could be implemented if space required it.) In the back of each screen is a small, high-quality speaker. A film loop taken from a found home movie is projected onto the screens; they catch fragments of the light-images, and, because of the screens’ arrangement at different distances from the projector, the images are in focus to varying degrees. At the same time, spoken words are played through the speakers — phrases dealing with remembering — spoken by three women, teenaged to senior citizen. The voices come out of only one speaker at a time, coordinated in space by the computer which is playing them, and grow progressively weaker as they are played from speakers at increasing distances from the light source.

Ideally, the piece should be set up so that people can walk through it. This was the situation at Chicago Filmmakers, where it was first exhibited in the “Light and Time” media event in 1994; people attending the film screenings walked under and through the piece as they went in and out. During the screenings, the piece was turned off.

The piece can also be done in a floor-standing version.