“Synesthesia” is an interactive game of audio-visual temporality within which we can contemplate light, sound, or the time in which everything happens. Press a key and try to feel the speed of electromagnetic waves.
What is interactivity? It is the ability for a subject to recognize a reaction to a signal that comes from it. We can assume that interactivity is a temporal phenomenon, as there is a certain time range in which the subject can recognize that what is happening is a reaction to the stimulus it has sent. If the time from sending the signal to receiving the feedback is too long, the subject may lose the correlational thread and interpret the event not as a reaction to the stimulus, but as a separate phenomenon independent of the subject’s actions that the subject is simply witnessing.
When we talk about interactive installations, we expect the time between the stimulus and the reaction to be computed in seconds or even milliseconds. For example, when interacting with a smartphone screen, if everything is working properly, our consciousness does not even register the time between the action and the gadget’s reaction to that action.
If we think of the concept of “synesthesia,” there is a primary stimulus to one of our senses, say hearing, which is further accompanied by a color experience that forms our imagination reacting in this way to the sound. If we do not specifically focus on the temporal aspect, everything seems to happen at once in a flow. When the sound wave reaches our senses, it transforms into a light wave in our mind, and we do not observe a “lag” or “delay” in the process.
This mechanism is externalized in the installation “Synesthesia,” which is a “mechanical organ” for the production of audio-visual fantasies. The mechanism works in a way that the iteration of the key triggers an audio feedback and a visual feedback at the same time. Of course, we can think about the speed of light waves, which travel a million times faster than sound waves.
Schwere Reiter Studio