Flickering Signifiers

Ken E. Rinaldo

Flickering Signifiers , ongoing
  • Flickering Signifiers
    500 × 340
  • Flickering Signifiers
    500 × 327
Flickering Signifiers is an ambient light installation concerned with the rhythmic nature of television light and how it is used to seduce and compel the viewer into a kind of hypnotic and passive inaction-while watching. Detection of movement has been at the core of our survival and ironically it creates an embalmed behavior, which allows easy seduction by rapid flashing movement. Indeed, the edge of the human retina is mostly sensitive to movement.

These works de-emphasize the images by which media producers effect our behavior and focus on rapid-fire cuts, frenetic dark/light patterning and sequences of rhythmic-complementary colors, which seduce the eye. They seem to become especially frenetic on 15-minute intervals when commercials are being aired. These works reference Marshall Mcluhans’s notion that the "medium is the message". It is not what we see, but how we see that determines the power of the medium. Here one element of the medium is removed and distilled from its "content" to point to the mediums ability to manipulate the body and its perceptual systems.

The works are a formal synthesis of the human eye and retina but incorporate rewired color televisions encased in blown glass forms. The eyeballs (glass forms) replace the TV tube and the TV's glow is projected onto large silver and white parabolic lenses, which are emblematic of the retina. This accentuates the fluttering TV glow, while removing the TV images.

Kenneth E. Rinaldo
  • aesthetics
    • contextual
    • installation-based
    • multi-user
  • genres
    • bioart
    • installations
  • subjects
    • Body and Psychology
      • movement
Technology & Material
Exhibitions & Events