Broken City LAb - LAb[au]

internet blog
Toronto, Canada

post by: Justin

featuring: SignalToNoise, kinetic sound art installation
by LAb[au] 2012


I saw this in the Globe and Mail this morning and thought it was worth reposting here given how deep we're into thinking about text in public spaces at the moment ... seems like it would be a really fun installation to see in person! The project is called S/N (Signal to Noise) and can be found in Terminal 1 at Pearson Airport in Toronto. It's part of this year's Luminato Festival, one of the preeminent arts festivals in North America, having commissioned over 50 new works of art, and featured 6,500 artists from 35+ countries. Luminato launched in 2007 with a work by one of our favourites, Rafael Lozano Hemmer's Pulse Front: Relational Architecture 12.

As for S/N, here's the project description... The transformation of random letters into legible words is at the technocentric heart of S/N (Signal To Noise), created by the Belgian artists LAb[au]. The installation is constructed from an assortment of discarded technology and salvaged split-flaps, components from the information displays that predated LED monitors in public spaces like airports and train stations.

Arranged in a circular grid, the flaps randomly rotate until the system identifies a word. The flow of words creates an auto-poetic sequence, inviting viewers to interpret its meaning. LAb[au] explores the theme of space and time constructs relative to information processes. Its three members - Manuel Abendroth, Jérôme Decock and Els Vermang - specialize in system art and are mainly active within the interactive, reactive and generative realm.

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