Catalogue > Un extrait vidéo au hasard

Gregory Bennett


Animation | mp4 | couleur | 20:47 | Nouvelle-Zélande | 2018

Exosphere (2018) is 21-minute long looped digital animation. The term ‘exosphere’ refers to the uppermost layer of atmosphere surrounding a planet, where it thins out and merges with interplanetary space: an in-between zone that suggests both limitations and possibilities. The work in part references French philosopher Paul Virilio’s suggestion that the modern city has become a ‘claustropolis’, where the inhabitants feel the need to put up what he describes as an ‘exospherical fence’ or barrier to fend off the unknown dangers of the outside world. Another influence is The Panopticon, an institutional design created by the 18th century English philosopher Jeremy Bentham. Employing multiple humanoid forms trapped in perpetual looped motions, ‘Exosphere’ reflects the primary functions of The Panopticon, which explores ideas of surveillance, regulated behaviour and the disciplinary society. Here the corporeal body is transformed into proliferating avatars inhabiting a range of environments where existence is either tenuous, or wholly subsumed into a synthetic ecosystem. These spaces can be read as a series of psychological landscapes, as representations of hermetic digital colonies – depictions which fluctuate between the utopian and dystopian, or as figures enacting some enigmatic ceremonial. The artist uses current animation technology to reflect metaphorically what might be occurring in the present while also imagining any number of possible futures.

Gregory Bennett is a New Zealand-based artist who works with 3D animation, motion capture, projection mapping, and virtual reality. His work has been exhibited internationally in galleries and new media festivals in the USA, Hong Kong, China, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand. Recent exhibitions include the AA/LA Gallery in Los Angeles, ‘the’ at the BronxArtSpace in New York, the juried exhibition at the 2016 International Symposium on Electronic Art in Hong Kong, and the Centre for Contemporary Photography in Melbourne, Australia. He was also a finalist in the 7th Screengrab International Media Arts Award in Australia in 2015 and was selected for the Video Contemporary exhibition at the 2015 Sydney Contemporary International Art Fair. His work has also been selected for the Supernova 2018 Digital Animation Festival in Denver, USA; Currents 2014, the Santa Fe International New Media Festival, USA; SIMULTAN Festival for Video, Media Art, Exploratory Music and Sound 2014, Timisoara, Romania; Prak-sis n3w M3dia Art Festival 2014, Chicago, USA; TEMP Art Space, New York; ISEA 2012 in Alberquerque, New Mexico, USA. He was also an invited artist for Narracje 2013, Installations and Interventions in Public Space in Gdansk, Poland.