WINDOW FOCUS

 

This was one of the installations made for an exhibition at Exedra called 'switch on - switch off' It was difficult to document in a still image since it involved the proces of seeing as a phenomena of action and reaction. I will begin by explaining how the concept developed. Exedra is a particular space dominated by windows facing the street. It is so open and transparant causing the surrounding street environment to become a major influence on all that happens inside but this can also accounted for the other way around. I was asked to react on this space. The first thing that I concentrated on were these windows. It involves the people that pass by; they glance, their curiosity is triggered but their self consciousness holds them back from continuing this process. So I wanted to find a way to hold the eye of the passer-by a little longer. The solution to me could found in creating a concentration in one area containing a small detail that will draw the person to wanting to look closer. I selected two areas that gave a good visual focus into the exhibition space. These areas were covered with opaque foil and in the centre a square of 40x40 cm. was left open at eye level. In front of these openings a glass tank was mounted and filled with water. The tank was inhabited by a school of tropical neon tetra fish. What makes these small fish so fascinating is that they change colour depending on how the light hits them, they can change from green to violet. I also mounted a tropical fish lamp to bring this out more strongly. The result was as I expected: people did stop to look more closely, at first triggered by the movement of the fish. As they looked at the fish, they could also see the space behind them creating a picture of the environment in a specific concentration. Inside you could witness the curious heads framed in front of the window opening. The lights stayed on till midnight giving the fish a chance to sleap till daybreak.