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Browse the Rencontres Internationales catalogue, or search the archives of the works presented since 2004. New video clips are routinely posted and the images and text are regularly updated.
Elias heuninck
Lightkeeping
Experimental doc., Digital work | 4k, custom made camera | black and white | 11'11'' | Belgium | 2015
Curious about creating a new image quality, Elias Heuninck made a digital camera. A very simple one. Instead of using a complex sensor to capture the whole image in a fraction of a second, it builds up the image pixel by pixel by making one simple measurement at a time. The camera starts at the top left corner and works its way to the bottom right one, just as you are reading this text. To get the information for each position, the camera shoots a short pulse of laser light towards its subject and waits for the light-echo to return. It is then able to find the distance between itself and the object that reflected the light. The collected measurements do not show anything recognisable yet. The data has to be translated first in order to be visible as a greyscale image. With an exposure time of four days (and up to four weeks), it is not the most practical camera around, but it allows Elias to work directly with the building blocks of the picture itself. The resulting images are digital by nature, yet the visual resemblance with prints from the early days of photography is striking. Whereas the conventional camera is a darkroom that captures light, this camera is more like a lighthouse. Since every point in the image is a distance measurement, the image becomes a map. The video is a slideshow of scenes and letters. The letters are selected from an archive of the correspondence of William Henry Fox Talbot, a pioneer in negative-positive photography.
Elias Heuninck (1986) studied media art at the School of Arts in Ghent. He got interested in the use of a contemporary form of the landscape-image for various experiments. His works do sometimes involve different media, but they always touch on the material of film and the notion of cinema. He gently disorients the audience by changing the perspective in space, on paper, or in a digital data file.