Light Space Modulator

Light Space Modulator is a project for a kaleidoscopic tunnel that rotates around the visitors as they walk through. While the visitor’s body is free to walk, its image is multiplied by the reflecting walls inside the tunnel. Thereby one experiences an extension of their movement, deconstructed and inverted multiple times.

The mechanism of the kaleidoscope offers an experience which engages one to consider a world beyond conventional cognition, provoking a form of transition. While it spins, the tunnel shifts the visitor’s surrounding references, causing interference of their balance and gravitational sense. Through these kinaesthetic-sensory engagements, the work confronts the visitor with their grasp of reality. The shredded image and gravitational disorientation of the visitor invites them to reassess their awareness and to be completely in the present. This transitional passage might offer its passer-through a new perspective on their way beyond.

The technical images currently all around us are in the process of magically restructuring our ‘reality’ and turning it into a ‘global image scenario’. Essentially this is a question of ‘amnesia’. Human beings forget they created the images in order to orientate themselves in the world. Since they are no longer able to decode them, their lives become a function of their own images: Imagination has turned into hallucination.
– Vilém Flusser, ‘Towards a Philosophy of Photography’ (1983)

Video render by Rob Bothof

Mike Rijnierse researches the inherent principles of optical instruments and early animation devices, such as the ‘laterna magica’ and kaleidoscopes – considered to be precursors of film and digital media – in order to investigate the phenomenon of seeing in relation to motion. The artist is not guided by nostalgia. His interest lies in questioning the current production of images, examining contemporary visual experience, since today’s devices no longer show their internal processes and therefore they work as ‘black boxes’. By revealing the process of production of light, color, source and shadow, Rijnierse illustrates how vision and illusion are intertwined. Renders by: Sofia Chionidou

“Our perceptual apparatus is a cultural construction. The way the eye functions is partially a construction, since it processes light from our surroundings, and the brain compresses and digests information around us, but we mistakenly tend to understand these complicated systems as a natural given thing. Kaleidoscopes play with the fact that what we see can easily be disorganized or reconfigured. They playfully show us multiple ways of seeing the world, so you could say that a kaleidoscope constitutes a different perspective.”
– David Howes, ‘Empire of the Senses’ (2005) –

Make a Light Modulator – L. Moholy-Nagy