évasion (duet)

évasion (duet) is a 2-channel moving image and audio installation that restages Harry Houdini’s famous straightjacket escape. It is the second iteration of a multi-channel video and responsive environment called évasion that was created in 2014.

The work was shown at Bega Regional Gallery for the exhibition Motion: the body and movement in contemporary art, 17 July –22 August, 2015 and will tour regional galleries in 2016.

évasion in progress at Artspace residency

We have started work on our new work évasion (New Work Grant, 2012–13, Australia Council for the Arts). We currently have a residency at Artspace, Sydney until the end of this year. And here are the beginnings of our 8-channel interactive installation emerging in the space

In July this year, we shot the footage for the new installation featuring Ben Murphy as our escape artist. We are reworking this material taking inspiration from early cinematographic devices such as the praxinoscope and zoetrope to help us rethink relations between vision and movement in perception. The installation will playback sequences of the footage,  across 8 separate  flat screens to both break-up and restitch the performance of his escape. As the audience circumnavigates the installation, Ben’s escape unfolds from conflicting perspectives. Each screen plays back its own angle and tempo of events. The circumnavigation promises to reveal how the escape ‘works’. But the installation is a perceptual illusion; more of the escape unfolds yet less of the trick is revealed.

We are also working on the sound design, which will work with auditory illusions such as the shepard tone, an illusion that functions via pitch circularity, and with audio spatialisation. The soundscape will seem to precede the presence of audience members circulating around the installation. Sensors will detect audience position and trigger audio to travel ahead of the listeners’ position. Like the escape artist, the sound always escapes from the audience. Overall we will evoke a perceptual interplay between direct and fully present sound that promises to unfold yet nevertheless escapes resolution and/or auditory delivery.