Handsight

'Handsight' (or 'Hindsight' 1990) is an interactive installation by Ágnes Hegedûs.

Handsight

Ágnes Hegedûs, Handsight, photo © Jan Sprij

The installation Handsight is an interactive computer graphic environment created in 1990. The work creates a correlation of the physical world and the virtual world. A bottle that consists of its own closed world, which embodies the mountain Golgotha with the cross, represents the physical world. The virtual world is a computer-generated environment, which is projected on a wall in a dark room and only works by interaction from the viewer through a transparent bowl. The bowl is positioned in the middle of the room. Next to the bowl lays a hand-held eyeball interface. Once the visitor penetrates his hand inside the empty transparent globe with the hand-held "eye," the projected eye on screen opens into a virtual world. As a metaphor for the eye now the transparent bowl with the hand-held eye functions as an eye itself. By moving the hand-held eye the viewer can now explore the virtual environment.

The bottle was chosen for its value as an ethnological object that evokes belief by giving it a visual representation. It's a passion jar used in late nineteenth century to foster imagery access to a sacred scene. The world of the bottle and the virtual world visualized on the screen offer a metaphor for perception. It is a perception of a virtual realm that is not matched to the physical world, but rather is a view of the "mind's-eye" or of externalized imagination. At the same time, it exposes the logic of this construction rather than participates in the illusion. In this way, the piece both offers and deconstructs interactivity.

Application software: Gideon May and Richard Holloway
Produced at the ZKM Karlsruhe in cooperation with the Ars Electronica Linz


Handsight by Ágnes Hegedûs (1990) from V2_ on Vimeo.

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