Amodal Suspension, 2003
From the series Relational Architecture 8
Robotic searchlights, custom software, computer,
Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s public installation, Amodal Suspension, was created to commemorate the opening of Japan’s Yamaguchi Center for Arts and Media in 2003. Designed as a large-scale interactive installation, the public could use the website www.amodal.net to send short text messages to each other using a cell phone or web browser, however, rather than being sent directly, the messages were encoded as unique sequences of flashes with 20 robotically-controlled searchlights, turning the sky around Yamaguchi into a giant communication switchboard. Inspired in part by the Tanabata tradition of hanging wishes on bamboo, the project received over 400,000 unique visitors from 94 countries. Exhibited are video documentation and an accompanying Lambda print, Amodal Suspension Sketch, which shows two aerial views of the city. On the left is a recent high definition satellite picture and on the right is an illustration from the Ouchi medieval period, characterized by some scholars as a Japanese renaissance. Overlaid on each side is a pattern of lights generated by the installation.