[ISEA97] Artist Talk: Matthias Lehnhardt – Whirlpool of Misunderstanding

Artist Statement

As a result of our telematic tradition, we view the computer not in its instrumental role in the realization of projects within our various departments, but as a media questioned of the role it plays in artistic communications. We are very critical of a premature euphoria, seeing alone through the sheer possibilities of these new technologies a revision or reversal of mass-medial communication structures. Interesting to us are phenomena and projects which, within the infrastructure of the new informations-technology, thematicize and endeavor to create conversation around the social conditions for generative, transformational information systems. The idea of the interactive installation (whirlpool) is part of the development for electronic communication around the Baltic sea area in Europe. We notice extremely different people in this region: from Estonia to Sweden, from Germany to Russia. And: there is a need for a free cultural exchange space, for an open structure to meet each other. At a final state the”whirlpool of misunderstanding” connects up to 8 different places (countries) via an own network (ISDN, Satellite), based on the internet protocol. The shape of the “whirlpool” looks like a “tipi” (half sphere), consisting of 8 segments (bars). Each segment contains a movable camera-display unit connected to a specific segment of an other”whirlpool” (point to point). The camera-display units are motor driven and synchronized. If you push a unit, the connected unit performs the same movement: up/down/left/right/in/out. The displays show live-material (camera/audio) or prepared material (video/audio) from the server (x-change-space on a www-server/ 3-D navigation). Specific positions of the unit actuate specific events. The installation can be visited via the internet (spectators).

Credits: Telematik Workgroup 97: Steven Adler, Catherine deCourten, Frank Fietzek, Jan Heise, Regan King, Karsten Korn, Matthias Lehnhardt, Matthias Mayer, Uli Winters.

  • Matthias Lehnhardt (Germany) Hochschule für Bildende Künste,  HAMBURG. Telematik Workgroup 97 consists of: Steven Adler, Catherine deCourten, Frank Fietzek, Jan Heise, Regan King, Karsten Korn, Matthias Lehnhardt, Matthias Mayer, Uli Winters. The Telematik Workgroup has been in existence since 1991 at the School of Fine Arts Hamburg. It is a group of students and professors coming from the areas fine art, art history, documentary and experimental film and video, typography and graphics in public media, photography and reporting media, and dialogue/computer arts. Art Projects include: Universcity TV at Ars Elektronica, Linz and the European Media Art Festival, Osnabrueck, 1991. The idea of Universcity TV comes from Salvatore Vanasco. Universcity TV / Das Projekt, a three hour local network connection/television broadcast during the international symposium “Interface 1” in Hamburg 1991. Querfaelltein, Exhibition at the Kunsthaus, Hamburg 1991.  Analog and digital “Stacks dialogues” dealing with the interpretive quality of digital and photographic images. Picture Noise (Das Rauschen der Apparate): Experimental television broadcast with Northern German Broadcasting (NOR), Hamburg 1993. Artists and art critics step into the “blue” of telematics—aphasia or artistic innervation? Connect Medial: “Chat” connection between the School of Fine Arts, Hamburg and the Mediale media congress and exhibition Hamburg 1993. LivingRooms: Computer installation at “HyperCult 3”. University of Lueneburg 1991 An installation inviting guests to explore an ever changing interrelation­ship between a semingly autistic network-play of information and their own sensory input into this system. RealFiktion nx: Presentation of the state of the “Virtual European Arts University” at the 13th World Computer con­gress (Computer and the Arts) as a series of online net­work-developed projects and as a ”hetero-medial” demonstration. Interface 3/ delicate constructions: We organized the electronic based conference “Interface 3 network” (1994-1996) for the international symposium “Interface 3”.                                                            elbe-studios.de/?MID=3&PERS=128