Gareth Spor

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Star Gate (2001), 2008

digital ink-jet prints, Dimensions Variable

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In a moment of time, too short to be measured, space turned and twisted upon itself -last line from the official 2001: A Space Odyssey
script by Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke

The images displayed in the installation, Star Gate, are generated from the closing scenes of Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke's masterpiece film, 2001: A Space Odyssey. Set in a past future, 2001 concerns the human race's encounters with a series of mysterious black monoliths, evidence of an enigmatic race of technologically advanced alien beings. In the film's closing scenes, the protagonist Dave Broman is taken by these beings, on a fantastically rendered trip through vast distances of space and time to meet the film's mysterious conclusion. To generate the images in this installation, frames from these scenes have been processed through a transformation where the familiar roles of space and time are rotated, generating an unnatural or alien perspective where space is compressed to the horizontal dimension and time is rendered static along the vertical.

While perceptually, the dimensions of space and time are qualitatively different, in the realm of mathematics they can be abstracted and manipulated in a number of ways. It is possible that our perception of space and time is just a peculiarity of our native biological apparatus. If so, it follows that we could speculate on alternative perspectives on these dimensions; these perspectives being just as valid as the one we are accustomed to. Maybe this manipulation of space-time is what today, we achieve through art; yet instead of on the physical plane, we operate on the psychic plane of the viewers and those who experience our actions. The act of art can be seen as an intervention in the logical, linear sequence of events that make up reality, encouraging us to pause, reflect and sometimes reconfigure our knowledge and understandings of our world.

In the film 2001, the manipulation of space-time is the act of a highly advanced civilization, their technology indistinguishable from magic. The sequence of events is depicted with a mysterious, abstracted visual style and left to the viewer to interpret whatever physically transpires. Much in the same way as these final scenes are bizarre and mysterious, the ultimate outcome of this installation is up to the subjective interpretation of the viewer.

Artworks by Gareth Spor

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