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'Archetype' video art exhibit splits and rearranges a chaotic world

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Flickr / Aaron Sherwood

New York-based audiovisual artist Aaron Sherwood has been covered here before — last year, his Magnetophone "sound sculpture" impressed us with its electromagnetically generated music. Archetype, his latest work, plays with sound and imagery in the context of a more traditional gallery installation. Sherwood's chaotic visuals are projected onto three translucent paper screens arranged in a loose triangle, surrounded by four speakers. He describes the project as "an expression of a world in constant, continuous change," noting that the video's composition will change depending on the visitor's position around the screens. It's hard to get that effect in a video, but the one below gives a sense of what it's like to see the three screens coalesce into one picture. The projected video itself is also on Sherwood's Archetype page.

It's possible to draw parallels between Archetype and Firewall, one of Sherwood's best known pieces; they're both audiovisual installations that depend partly on the body and position of the viewer for their effect. But Archetype is much less about interactivity and more about letting an experience wash over you. The installation was shown as a work in progress last month at the Emily Havery Foundation Gallery in New York, and Sherwood is presenting it as his thesis project for NYU's Interactive Telecommunications Program next week.