eikasía / is this real?
The installation "Eikasía/ Is This Real?" uses motor movements, water and reflection to explore our relation to reality. What is real and what is fake? The question is now more relevant than ever. If we move around in the online world, we consume tons of information. The question that constantly accompanies us is whether we can trust the source.
The installation consists of a basin of water. On the sides of the basin there are two motors with paddles facing each other. A projector throws a line of light inside the water basin, which is reflected from the water and thrown onto the wall behind it.
The water surface is now and then moved by alternating paddle strokes, each triggered by specific twitter live tweets: If a user questions reality in the social network through a text tweet, a paddle hits the surface of the water.
Due to the wave motion, the line reflection on the wall changes its state to a pulsating band. The triggering tweet text is simultaneously visualised. The way in which the line reflection on the wall differs from the straight line in the water, makes us question if that is still only a reflection or a real independent object.
This perception represents the state of Eikasía. The phenomenon of reflections was for the philosopher Plato the first of the steps on the path to understand reality. His Analogy of the Divided Line shows reflections and shadows as the lowest level of knowledge. In this level of the divided line, called "Eikasía", it is not possible for one to perceive if something is real or if it is just the reflection or the shadow of real objects.
The work processes actual, expressed, Impressions on the internet, which is often coined by a perpetual doubt of neutrality and authenticity of information. The work assumes the role of a neutral, non-judgmental listener and indicator of human doubt and reaction to information. The installation sets our today's issue of integrity of information into the context of the philosophic question of all time: Is This Real? Is This Real?
* The live tweets appear inside this Installation only short moments after they were published on Twitter. They are not stored inside this program or from the artist or used for any other purpose beside of showing the piece in an art context or its documentation. The data is taken over the official Twitter API.