[ISEA2020] Artists Statement: Roderick Coover & Krzysztof Wołek — The Key to Time

Artists Statement

The Key To Time is a highly experimental and imaginative, immersive, cinematic art experience designed for 360 cinemas, domes, virtual reality headsets and other immersive formats. It offers a surreal and operatic, dream-like experience, and it bridges early cinema and virtual reality. Filmed at the CeTA Studios in Wroclaw, Poland, and created using 3-D 360 degree cinema technologies, the experience plunges viewers into a dreamlike adventure inside mechanisms of time and cinema itself.

The dreamlike story follows Tanek, a scientist who is trapped in the future due to a time-travel accident. His only hope is to travel through dreams. As with works like Guy Maddin’s The Forbidden Room and David Blair’s Wax or the Discovery of Television Among the Bees, this experimental art work turns upon its narrative threads. In addressing time, technology and environmental catastrophe, it also echoes themes of classics of early cinema like Arrival of a Train (at Ciotat) and Metropolis. The Key To Time occupies a space between media arts, sound and cinema. It is the result of an unique collaboration between media artist/filmmaker Roderick Coover and composer Krzysztof Wolek. Song and dialog elements layer over cinematic sequences filmed silently both in green screen studio settings and natural settings.

To view the sample using a HMD, please see Meet Me At The Station

  • Roderick Coover is the creator of interactive, experimental and emergent cinema, virtual reality and digital arts that are internationally exhibited, and his publications include, among others, the books The Digital Imaginary: Literature And Cinema Of The Database and, with Thomas Bartscherer, Switching Codes: Thinking Through Digital Technology In The Humanities And Arts. He is Professor of Film and Media Arts at Temple University, Philadelphia (USA), and he lives in the USA and France. unknownterritories.org
  • Krzysztof Wolek (b. 1976, Bytom, Poland) is a composer, improviser, and installation artist. He is currently working as Professor of Music Composition and a Director of Digital Composition Studies at the University of Louisville. He received commissions from the Warsaw Autumn Festival, the Siemens Foundation, SCI/ASCAP, among others, as well as awards, grants and stipends from the University of Chicago, University of Louisville, Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Kentucky Arts Council and Polish Ministry of Culture and National Heritage. Krzysztof is a passionate advocate of contemporary acoustic and electronic music and multimedia compositions, serves on the jury of the Grawemeyer Award for Music Composition and is a Programming Committee Member of the Warsaw Autumn Festival. Krzysztof’s works span a broad spectrum of works from purely acoustic, improvisational and electronic to various forms of multidisciplinary collaborations. They have been presented at many festivals of contemporary music and art in Europe, North and South Americas and Asia. krzysztofwolek.com