Video Sculpture – week 6 – Time-based media concept

Stefan, Wenjing and I worked in a team to focus on interpreting Hans Haacke’s piece The Wave.

Image result for the wave hans haacke


We started off by the recent exhibition of his All Connected at the New Museum.

It was mentioned that Haacke was inspired by the ‘System Esthetics’ by Jack Burnham that analyzed the influence of Ludwig von Bertalanffy’s General System Theory (1968) on 20th century sculpture. [Source]

“inspired me to continue with my kinetic, process-oriented works, and also to expand into biological and – toward the late 1960s – to deal with social ‘systems.'”

–Hans Haacke



His way of capturing and analyzing the physical systems in the museum setting pushed us to analyze the systems in the digital world.

We have two directions to go to:

  1. New system: Reinterpreting in terms of the systems in the digital world 
  2. “New” process: How human input can increase or decrease the process of the physical exchange –> make it more dramatic 

We brainstormed in terms of the representations for the systems in the digital world:

  • information exchange
  • attention exchange

We then started to branch out from here to think of forms such as

  • telepole and wires underground
  • fiber optics that are for information transfer
  • black tubes that collect the wires
  • ethernet cables

We were talking about how each request from the web browser generated several packages on the back-end. We wanted to visualize the amount of packages through projection mapping since this digital system is always happening yet not being presented as is to the users.


Learning from Hans Haacke’s The Wave, we wanted to present the form of systems to the users.

The Rough Idea

  • users enter a room with a computer in it
  • they were prompted to do something to a computer – web browser
  • we gather the packages generated
  • show the packages generated in the room through video projection and video mapping

The Next Step

We will develop the idea even further and think of the visual presentations as well as the objects and materials for the piece.

Published by Yiting Liu


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