Synchronous Forest 3.0

Installation work for CCA Playspace Gallery, San Francisco, July 2009

(prior versions of this work listed at bottom of this post)

Slow and gently crossfading images projected onto a large spiral of diaphanous fabric, drifting from a rotating tree-trunk bark-scape to a daydream of gold-green flowering branches wafting in breeze.

Sound of urban beehive activity, filtered so that the bees themselves are nearly absent. Followed by a soundscape of distant crickets and electrical wires in mist, punctuated by the violent and banal passing of a minivan speeding through the landscape.

A small bench awaits in the center of the spiral, a place to sit and listen to small, naked speakers dangling from wires, playing heavily processed and edited bird recordings.

At the center of the spiral, a “trunk” is formed of discarded etched panels, bright copper on white fiberglass.

A wicker garden bench is positioned outside the spiral, so one might sit and regard the spiral as one might regard a garden.

A listener at Synchronous Forest 3
A listener at Synchronous Forest 3

In making it, I was thinking about the relationships and interfaces between humans and nature. As beings who regard ourselves as beings, we can see ourselves as part of nature or as outside of it.

work details:

  • Single-Channel video projection.
  • Four audio channels derived from field recordings of urban wildlife in San Francisco’s Mission District and environs.
  • Materials: Fabric, Video, Sound, Benches, Speakers, Space, Circuit Boards. 18′ x 25′ and 11′ tall.

This video is a four-minute walk through the gallery space.

Narrated Walkthrough:

Prior versions of this material were exhibited:

“Synchronous Forest” in collaboration with Lindy Lyman, Regis University, Denver CO, 1998

“Synchronous Forest 2.0” in collaboration with Lindy Lyman, Museum of Outdoor Arts, Englewood CO, 1999