The Object of this Slight Acceleration

2013

A six week research residency (2012) followed by an installation (June - September 2013) at IZOLYATSIA, Donetsk, Ukraine.

A 28 minute digital animation shown on an analogue T.V, a steel sculpture, and an embroidered badge comprised the installation.

Borrowing the methodologies of 'Turborealism' - an obscure and disputed genre of 90's Russian Sci-Fi literature - the work explores a speculative conjuction between the idealism of Konstantin Tsiolkovsky's work of fiction 'Beyond the Planet Earth' (published 1920), Russian Cosmism, the lust for extraterrestrial colonisation, and the contemporary drive to resolve an impending world protein crisis by manipulating the growth cycle of the gregarious Desert Locust.

 

The film element of the work has two chapters, the first comprises footage of Desert Locust specimens in gregarious phase undertaking mating procedures. Three 'characters' are identified by animated number tags that follow them around the confines of a glass capsule. Two male locusts make repeated unsuccessful attempts to mate with an unwilling female.

 

The second chapter of the film comprises 3D digitally animated footage of several space vehicles and space stations. These simply rendered objects floating above an 8 bit green grid planet are modelled on existing playground architecture found in a cosmically themed children's playground dating from the mid 1980's in Donetsk.

Part of the sequence shows the view looking down the length of a rocket as it launches from the surface of the green grid planet and enters a shallow orbit. The geometry of the planet and rocket are to proportionally to scale - the ratio between the size of the rocket and planet in the 3D virtual space accurately emulates the correct acceleration, velocity and manoeuvres of a U.S. Delta II rocket launch found on Youtube.

 

The video was shown on an old Soviet era T.V. set placed on a classic piece of Soviet furniture found in an Khrushchev era apartment block. The T.V. set and furniture were positioned on a section of varnished parquet flooring protruding from the corner of the space. The parquet dates from 1980 and was found unused in a storage facility on the territory of the insulation factory.