The Moving Image Lab

  • Experiments in film viewing atmospheres. 
  • 2 organizers, 3 contributors, 4 installations/screenings, 2 exhibitions, 1 film festival 
  • Boston + Istanbul

We believe in the moving image. And that film should move you. We reject the tradition of sitting in a chair and passively absorbing the projection screen. We say fuck chairs. We say get up, walk around, feel the film around you… in you. This is the Moving Image Lab, a sequence of serious social experiments that raise questions about our film viewing experience: the way we see, feel the film; the exact moment our subconscious mind starts poking our conscious one. What happens when we change / manipulate the reality around us or invent an entirely new reality during the film screening? What happens when we are invited to interact with the film as we watch it? Can we discover more effective ways of reaching and communicating with an audience within a film viewing experience?

The idea of the Moving Image Lab and the book project descended on Farida Amar and Aylin Gürses at the London Heathrow Airport while they were waiting for their flight to Boston, one fine December day in 2009. Amar and Gürses, taking the risk of achieving no significant results at all, decided to start a series of screenings and discussions on carefully selected films, incorporating sensory enhancements to the existing environment where these films are viewed. They were especially curious about what ways this manipulation had an effect on the audience viewing experience. The autoethnographic analyses of these experiments, the resulting exhibitions and a compilation of the audio and visual documentation will transform this into a multimedia project. 

In collaboration with architects and visual artists, The Moving Image Lab builds complete installations within which audiences can experience film. We take into consideration not only what they see, but also what they smell, taste, and how they hear the film. What colors and materials, lighting design, and food best bring the film to life. It is more than 4D cinema, it is literally a step into the story of the film itself from the moment you walk in.

LAB I : “Filmscape” 

This experiment featured artistic extensions of the film setting into the physical viewing environment. We intended to make the viewers feel as if they are in the film rather than just observing it. This challenged us, as communication artists and film scholars, to not only show a story on the screen, but to also extend that story into reality by providing a window for mental and conceptual space and time travel.

LAB I / SCREENING I : Paris, Texas (1984) directed by Wim Wenders

LAB I / SCREENING IIThe Girl on the Bridge (1999) directed by Patrice Laconte 

LAB II“Documented” 

This experiment was about documentary film. We focused on the relationship between the documentarian, Werner Herzog, and the documented. Herzog was chosen as a focus because he has exceptional curiosity that challenges communication between his subjects using the right questions, in the way researchers like ourselves strive to achieve.

LAB IISCREENING I : Encounters at the End of the World (2007) directed by Werner Herzog

LAB IIEXHIBITION I : “The curtains are drawn for the staging at the end of the world”

LAB IISCREENING IIGrizzly Man (2005) directed by Werner Herzog

LAB IIEXHIBITION IIWATCH


SPACE is Between Something and Something Else

SPACE is not a new concept. The ambition to discover, the curiosity about life, and the desire to be accepted are all ingrained in the very nature of our human existence. To want to know, to want to find, and to want to contribute is normal. Humans, at their core, are wonderers. We want to know how to explain things to others. We want to experience as much as possible. We want to conquer fear. We want to believe we are not alone. 

SPACE is a place for people with these very normal curiosities to work together. We want to be a part of everyday life, aware of it, and simply investigate it. We also believe that our human communities are interested in such learnings. We don’t want to change identities, we want to understand them. What currently exists is already beautiful and complicated enough - why recreate it? And if we ever become so enlightened that we believe we know everything, we will most likely commit suicide.

We always have a reason to continue our research as long as we believe we don’t know everything. We can continue to ask questions when we don’t have all the answers. And this for us is the reason to wake up every morning and to fall asleep and work through our subconscious - the unfiltered recycle bin of conscious experience. And frankly, the more we learn, the more we realize that we don’t really know anything at all. It is this irony that we find humorous, entertaining, and it is this conundrum that we have fallen in love with. That is reality.

SPACE Manifesto Film (above)

SPACE Opening Night photos by Zahra Syed & Michael Andreozzi (below)


SPACE

SPACE was the first studio / gallery space that I opened after leaving advertising. It was located in Boston’s South End and had two bedrooms in the back with a kitchen and bathroom as well as a 1,200 sq ft basement level gallery space with double doors facing Harrison Avenue. I lived here with a rotating group of artists in residence, including Gabriel Bello Diaz, Theresa Vilsmeier, Zahra Syed and Aylin Gurses as well as a dog named Chenzira, a bearded dragon named Mr. Watson and a rabbit named Knology. SPACE was a family, an experiment, a community art space, a playground. 

Visit iwantspace.com for more details.

SPACE concept video (above) 

SPACE layout design (below)

SPACE construction process photos (above) 



WORK

i am restless and discontent. i am maybe the most uncomfortable experience anyone encounters in their lifetime. i am young, talented, and aggressive when i get bored which happens often. i will question you, challenge you, and stare you in the eyes to ask for the truth. enough is never enough. i don’t eat, i don’t sleep, and i don’t sit still. i want to be a better person, i want to make the people around me better people, and i want to change the world. i still don’t know why i want those things, and i don’t do this by being warm and kind. i don’t give hugs (usually) and i still can’t pretend to care if i don’t give a shit. i am impatient and stubborn as hell. i wont lie to make you feel better. if your shirt is ass-ugly i wont tell you i like it. if i am holding a pack of cigarettes in my hand and you ask if i have any for you and i don’t feel like sharing, i will say “no.” i think the rules and the system and the natural order of things are in place for me to study, learn, and fuck with. i believe happiness is for people with small minds who don’t see the whole picture. i think depression is for everyone. if i hate you it means i still care about you and might even be in love with you. if i don’t talk to you, it doesn’t mean i hate you, just that i could care less and that you do not affect me on any level. when i see that something in my life isn’t working, i don’t just fix the one problem and move on. i believe the whole thing is eventually going to break down, pack my suitcase, and literally get on the next plane to wherever. i am not afraid to take a risk. i am not afraid of failure. i welcome it because if i am at risk of failure, it means i am doing something worth doing. i don’t believe that i am special or important. but it is important for me to create things and share ideas, because in the end they are more powerful than any of us will ever be. i believe that the words you say to someone do matter, and if you say just one wrong thing i will remember it forever. i buy beautiful roses and let them die. i eat rotten food and throw it up later alone in the middle of the night because i had nothing else to eat in the house. i don’t call home because i am homesick, but usually because i want something done for me or mailed to me. i don’t live by any strict principles, and don’t impose any of my lifestyle on others. unless for some strange reason i decided i like imposing on you, in which case i will do so with intensity every single day until you cave in. and the one thing i will not allow under any circumstances is for you to get in my way, calm me down, shut me up, or keep me from doing what i want to do. if you do so much as “shhh” at me i might begin to dream of slicing your tongue off.



Mentem Zine

Mentem was a zine which initiated conversations amongst strangers. We published the progression and continued the conversations via public submissions. This was an international art forum where artists and writers could communicate with each other through the medium of their choice. Readers were able join and respond to any piece printed, with the opportunity to be published in the following issue. We accepted submissions in any language and all styles of art and writing.  



Life is for Sharing

Campaign: “Rain of Flowers”

Client: Telekom 

Agency: Saatchi & Saatchi, Frankfurt am Main, Germany, 2009

Running Time: 8 countries over 4 months


Using Format