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Urania

collaborators: Vedran Parać, Tomislav Pokrajčić, White Smoke d.o.o., Zagreb
production: DIYARTLAB project

Urania (the title of this interactive installation refers to the mythological deity Uranus, who was believed to be the ruler of the skies and all the changes up there) is a device for effecting atmospheric changes. It allows us to control the cloud density in the sky.

By blowing into long pipes clouds can either be created or dispersed from the sky. Technically, the device is based on a panoramic screening on a wall and sensors controlled by a computer program. The interactive visual imagery that allows the user to participate in the creation of a virtual sky by blowing up or blowing away clouds is produced by computer animation and programmed relational processing. Due to the ‘immateriality’ of matter /clouds-wind/in this installation, the digital medium serves as an ideal surrogate for the gassy, airy state of clouds and breath.

Once philosophers took the idea to be the only and ideal reality, while all other living phenomena and images to be the imitation of that reality. Nowadays human actuality is filled with a great number of images and imitations of reality. This post-modern chaos of forms and apparent schizophrenia of the age require the collective consciousness to adapt to the new era – the era of information reality. Baudrillard, for instance, thinks that the simulacrum and the reality are psychologically identical, that the idea and the reality are basically the same. The “internal reality”, capacities of the human psyche, are explored as well: Reich thus thinks that there is a certain – psychic – energy that we can use to control matter. And yet, this is also an age of ‘immeasurable’ and 'invisible' energies (wireless, digital, nano and other technologies). All these processes need to be reconciled in this new relation of man, nature and technology, a relation which continues to be informed by contradictions of existence.

Age of new technologies. Age of multiplication of images... and genes... deus ex machina?

Along the same paradox, this device creates an artificial reality which is, in its existence, a reality itself.