Back to:
last page

Prix 1987 - 2007

Ars Electronica Linz & ORF Oberösterreich

We interrupt your regularly scheduled program
Osman Khan, Daniel Sauter

We interrupt your regularly scheduled program is a media installation that explores the social conditions of the television and our relationship to it. The installation wishes to investigate the very nature of television with its numerous channels, its ubiquity and its perpetual flow. Television has become the dominant medium of mass communication and entertainment. But it has also become the new hearth, as well as storyteller around which new social constructs have emerged. It functions as companion, as illumination and even as a mindnumbing drug.

The installation set-up is as follows: A television is placed facing the wall, its flickering glow reflecting off the wall and its sound echoing in the space. Its broadcast signal is simultaneously sent to a computer, where customized software processes the broadcast in real time by collapsing every frame of the television image into a one pixel-wide slice. These slices are horizontally arranged in sequence and projected back onto the wall next to the television set, showing an abstracted history of the broadcast signal. Cinematic cuts are transformed into clear vertical sections. Zooms become visualized as curves. Commercials and music videos are seen as vibrant vertical patterns and hectic splashes of color, while news is represented by calming studies of horizontal smears. Visitors are encouraged to switch channels with the remote control and explore the relationship between the broadcast, its sound and the projection. By disconnecting the sound with the expected visuals and replacing it with an abstracted projection, the work oscillates the visitor’s focus. Where the sound emitting from the television points to its triviality at times, the projection exposes the seductive nature of its images. This juxtaposition reveals the nature of television, at once both mesmerizing and banal.