A project by Sérgio Bonilha and Sergio Ohira
Artist residency in Nodar and Macedo de Cavaleiros (Portugal)
27 January – 5 February 2012
Exhibition at Ptarmigan Gallery (Helsinki, Finland)
8 February 2012
“Ascese” is part of a new series named “transimmanence” as a way of responding to the largely announced idea of a possible shift on Earth in a near future. In fact these artworks don’t have a very strict relation with this issue… but our intuition says it is necessary to think a little on this question, believing or not on this possible shift.
The series name is a subtile idea that mixes the relative opposite concepts of “transcendence” and “immanence” in a strategic way: the artwork title indicates some transcendent promise/possibility but the experience proposed by this same work is much more immanent. In the specific case of “ascese”, we are going to record a video using a camera with 3D lenses attached to a weather balloon which will be released at the ‘Maciço de Moraes’ in Northen Portugal; the video will be shown upside-down in a custom stereoscopic video viewer capable of creating some visual immersion in a somebody’s point of view flying for few moments and crossing the clouds (which give some reference of rising) until the ground arrives from the upper part of the scene giving the impression of landing in a different planet.
The chosen place has a special meaning to this project because it is one of the few places in our planet which has huge vestiges of ancestor continents and also because it was situated between many of the actual continents, almost at the middle of Pangaea. This area where we are going to record is almost inhabited and has an appearance of a forgotten place which can creates a lack of time references.
The Continental Drift theory was first suggested by Abraham Ortelius in 16th Century and fully developed by Alfred Wegener in the 1910’s but the supercontinent name Pangaea was coined in the 1920’s during a symposium discussing Wegener’s ideas who was also the first one to use weather balloons to track air masses.