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SF Time Capsule (2002)

site-specific installation
San Francisco Time Capsule, 2002.
Translucent photo in a light box. Photo by Felipe Dulzaides, repro by Christopher Woodcock.

This artwork started with an extraordinary encounter of an orange security cone glowing in Washington Square Park in San Francisco, CA. When passing by the park on our way home, four nights in a row this glowing cone would change position, propelling interesting dialogues among the two of us about extraterrestrial life and science fictional realities.

Central to our artistic practice is the question of how reality is perceived through different media. We are interested in the nuances between presentation and representation and the interplay between medium and subject. The 100 glowing security cones that we installed in the park surround the statue of Benjamin Franklin where a Time Capsule was buried in 1879. Hundred years later, in 1979, the original Time Capsule was replaced with a new one to be unearthed in 2079. By photographing the installation right before sunrise, we wanted to accomplish a feeling of time-absence. The lack of human presence and the staring of the streetlights, which magnify the site’s science fiction ambiance, particularly emphasize this. The Cinemascope formatted light-box allows for the broadening of the image to the dimensions of binocular vision and further calls attention to forms of cinematic perception. When the light-box is installed and lit, it appears as if the glowing security cones are "plugged in" to the wall. In the piece, we attempt to explore further the accentuated space between experience and imagination, searching for alternatives to conventional framing and to the consumption of images that influence our vision of the world.