Recent History, New York, June 5, 2003, 3 seconds and 400 milliseconds is an instant snap-shot of society which freezes the endless cascade of word-searches in a pier-to-pier (P2P) online network. These word-searches generally flow down the screen at a speed which is too fast for them to be read at all. The words are captured on the fly from the computer window and adhered onto the wall.
The random list acts as a kind of measure, a litmus test, a haphazard record of 21st Century global culture and its turbulent, rapid, multifaceted desire. Amongst the incoming searches there are deeply disturbing words that denote the most twisted psycho sexual deviations; springing like a rot from the seediest underworld of the culture. But right away we may move onto zones of the lightest, most candid invocations of pure unabridged fantasy. Besides this there are plenty of more trivial searches for software and pop world products. It is interesting to note that P2P, in its early stages seems to have connected with a kind mythical wishing-well of civilization, an address to the genie of the lamp. The nature of the words and sentences has changed in the last 6 years, becoming less naive in its form, more clued in to the functioning of a word-search.
Another aspect of the piece is how P2P searches also reveal a sense of (H)istory that has exploded to bits, where there is no possible way to encompass the fractured multifarious directions of global culture because there is no stable common reference that may encompass them. It is this new platform of the 1001 avenues of civilization that becomes interesting in a revisitation of a list which is only about 6 years old, in this case but which might already contain words that can't be deciphered, words which refer to micro sub-cultures that dissolve as fast as they form.
In its translation from virtual to spatial, the list of words can physically cover any area depending on the duration of the capture. The title of each new version contains this temporal reference (seconds and milliseconds), as well as the city and the year where the capture took place, which points towards the micro-historical reference of the project.
Other exhibition spaces:
Umeå, May 15, 2005, 3 seconds and 400 milliseconds (what you want)
Gandy Gallery, Bratislava, 2005