Machina Encyclopaedia, 1995
Site: Wewerka Pavilion, Münster, Germany

Machina Encyclopaedia was a kinetic light installation at Pavillon Wewerka in Münster, Germany. Pavillon Wewerka is a 200 square meter glass-enclosed exhibition space that is not accessible to the public. The glass walls of the exhibition space were covered in opaque vinyl film. In the interior, which cannot be seen from the outside, 20 slide projectors turn continuously in a 360' arc. The projectors turn at a constant speed, but each one at a different speed. Depending upon where the viewer is standing, the images appear to move at varying speeds, although they are actually moving at a constant speed. They are distorted by the outer surface of the glass walls, only to shrink a moment later to a small point of light. This creates the illusion in the viewer that he/she can see into the space out of which each single image appears to however momentarily on the surface and then disappear. But the inside of the exhibition space and the electrical equipment it contains, remain invisible to the viewer. However, the rotation of the projectors allows the viewer to catch a brief glimpse of their sharply defined outline as well as of the turntables on which the projectors are revolving. The images are superimposed and separate, constantly and randomly forming new collages of light. Thus the Pavillion is transformed into a dynamic and ever-changing public media sculpture space.

Not only is the space public, but also the 1620 projected images, taken from the Brockhaus Encyclopedia are, like images on the Internet, accessible to anyone who would like to see them. These images are emblematic of western civilization's collective cultural wisdom and have been assembled here as a kind of recreation of a 17th century "hall of wonders." Each letter of the encyclopedia is represented by a number of images proportional to the amount of space words beginning with that letter take up in the encyclopedia.

Technical data: 10 two-level rotating mechanisms, 20 Kodak carousel projectors, 1620 slides, metal shelves.