Points of View II - Babel

Jeffrey Shaw
Source: Jeffrey Shaw

Jeffrey Shaw

Points of View II - Babel , ongoing
Co-workers & Funding
Software: Larry Abel /
Hardware: Tat Van Vark and Charly Jungbauer
  • point of View II
    341 × 500
Points of View II - Babel addressed issues relating to the Falklands War. It was made using the same functional and iconographic structures as Points of View I, but with a differing content.In BABEL hieroglyphs were used to articulate a psychological architecture - a hierarchical edifice that set out to identify the essential pathology of power and its inevitable predisposition to oppression and warfare.The form of this edifice was a stepped pyramid that carried the following signs (from top to bottom): BE PERMAMENT TO POSSESS - TO GOVERN/TO DIRECT WHAT IS SAID TO TAKE POSSESSION - TO GIVE TO BE WITHOUT (NOT HAVING) - TO FOLLOW AFTER TO INVADE/TO ATTACK - TO BE JOINED TO FOREIGNER/BARBARIAN. The pyramid was supported at the rear by the tall sign for DISEASE/DEATH. The pyramid lacked a triangle at the top (where the sign BE PERMANENT was situated) and this could be found at the base in the sign for FOREIGNER/BARBARIAN. The structuring of specific sound tracks was also an integral aspect of this installation. There were thirteen spoken texts, all edited from recordings made by Paul Brennan at the "Congress on Military Psychology" in Vienna in 1983. Here prominent military psychiatrists discussed the psychological methods of compelling soldiers to fight in the context of then recent Faulklands War. These thirteen sound tracks were interactively linked to the image via the same joystick that controlled the user's visual movement. Functioning like an audio mixer, this joystick modulated the various voices in relation to the different spatial positions that the user was taking in relation to the computer graphic representation. Each user would thus make a personal audio visual journey through this work, which constituted its real time performance. The shifting of the sound tracks generated a spontaneous confrontation of spoken information, and the movement around the image articulated the dynamic relationships of this ziggurat of power-full signs.
  • aesthetics
    • installation-based
    • interactive
    • multi-user
    • projected
    • sculptural
    • three-dimensional
    • visual
  • genres
    • installations
      • interactive installations
    • sound art
      • sound installations
  • subjects
    • Art and Science
      • representation of knowledge
    • Arts and Visual Culture
      • architecture
      • representation
      • visual culture
    • History and Memory
      • history
    • Media and Communication
      • visualization
      • writing
Technology & Material
Exhibitions & Events