Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s “Levels of Nothingness”


Do you remember Rafael Lozano-Hemmer’s Pulse Park installation in Madison Square Park? Rafael is back with some other very cool installation work, having finished it last weekend at the Guggenheim Museum.  The work, called Levels of Nothingness, was an inspirational piece on Kandinsky’s “Yellow Sound” essay from 1912.  From Rhizome:

Levels of Nothingness, which Lozano-Hemmer developed in collaboration with philosopher Brian Massumi, takes its inspiration from Kandinsky’s 1912 essay “Yellow Sound.” The installation generates visuals from phonetic data produced by reading philosophical texts by Kandinsky and others. (At the performance, Isabella Rosselini will kick off the readings, and audience members will be encouraged to continue). Rather than translating one kind of information into another to spell out a neatly servable metaphor–as Lozano-Hemmer did, for example, with Pulse Park, which presented Madison Square Park as a living organism by animating it with lights activated by the heart rates of passers-by–Levels of Nothingness promises to be more meditative and fuzzy, suggesting the connection between thought and feeling, or objectivity and subjectivity that the writers it featured tried to put in words. When visualization is so commonly used as a tool to clear things up, it’s encouraging to see artists using it as a way to hint at the murky and unknowable.

John Huntington sent me his article on Levels of Nothingness – thanks a lot, John!  Please check out his article, too!  The images are from John’s Picasa account:




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