Apparitions: Physical Space Physical Space

The installation consists of three rooms: one where the real space of the gallery and the virtual space of the computer meet, another that houses a small audio-visual installation, and a third that contains a sculptural installation.

In the first room, the virtual environment (a computer-generated simulation) is viewed on a video projection in the physical space of the gallery. At any given moment, one gallery visitor the "user" is able to navigate through the virtual space using an interface that allows movement in three dimensions. While the user navigates through the environment and interacts with objects in it, other viewers are able to watch what happens. A second video projector shows video segments (stored on laser disk) that are triggered by the user's actions.

Viewers can also explore the World Wide Web from a computer terminal on a table in this room. The World Wide Web is a global interactive information system that exists on the internet, a vast network of computer networks. The World Wide Web is a relatively new way of organizing and linking information electronically. By pointing and clicking on highlighted words and icons, users can easily access information (in the form of text, images, moving images and sound files) on computers around the world. Vital Signs has put together a Web Site, in conjunction with Apparitions, that will both describe and document the installation, as well as providing a catalogue of images and texts relating to VR, medical technologies, and related issues.

And in a small alcove off the first room, an installation using sound and organic materials questions the position of the individual body and identity that is constantly being bombarded by a society overrun by information. Tuning into images with a listening cone, solitary participants intimately interact with media sound bytes constantly playing around them. The images are graphic pictorial symbols or generic signs that express society's desire to create a universal system that can be read without translation by all cultures and peoples. In this installation, these signs are taken out of context, revealing their arbitrary nature. Burnt into wood, it is more obvious that they have been created by a human hand than an omnipotent one. Their meaning is left up to the interpretation of the viewer.

In the third space, the "Cartesian" Room, a large room that adjoins the first, a grid of suspended wire cables act as physical manifestations of perspective lines, or "orthogonals." These cables illustrate the perspective system. It is this system that is used to structure the visual design of virtual spaces as well as most other Western visual representations.

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