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The bystander in Calgary


Who is afraid of the architectural haiku?

An exploration of urban space through an altered vision of transformed architecture. In "The bystander in Calgary" video two-dimensional and monochrome floating shadows roam through a three-dimensional digital reconstruction of different places within the city. Architectural spaces are fragmented and dissected. Bottom-up and bird's eye view are suddenly and continuously alternated, simultaneously the sense of movement is at once reversed in the last scenes of the video. Unusual perspectives seem to be used in order to launch the spectators into a sort of video game interface, where sometimes geometrical constructions are overlapped with realistic images.

The singular protagonist of this distorted space is the bystander. Heron-Mazy studio considers him to be the only reliable repository of understanding of architectural spaces that are free of any contemporary generalization (in regards to socio-cultural issues) or lost insight: through unmoving and unmoved representations - the flat shadows in the video -, the bystander is a presence that is supposed to exist "in the nonsense of movement, a transition that can never be re-experienced". This figure, as per the author's intentions, appears to be a metaphorical being that allows the viewer to question the paradox that is space, as much as the "city's cultural wake up uttered discreetly; always about to make that leap from the window to become Duchamp."


Work group: John Maruszczak, Roger Connah
Mentioned project: The bystander in Calgary

USA 2008
Duration: 2'58''

Selected for VISIONS, the 2009 edition of BEYOND MEDIA Festival organized by Image.