Altar III: The Living Room
July 5 - 6, 2014
3600 Lyons Road, Austin, TX 78702
Media artists Bill Baird and Taurin Barrera have created a fictional character, Rick Boss, “the most successful real estate realtor in the history of Boise, Idaho’s burgeoning real estate market.” The viewer enters a room constructed of Saran Wrap, where sensors react to their movements and change the music, videos, and lighting accordingly. Plus they promise a voyeuristic thrill of being watched by a nonexistent character:
Basically, you’ll be mounted and watched by an extremely successful real estate salesman! “I look forward to watching you remotely,” continues Boss. “I never appear in person. Afraid of germs.” Rick Boss pauses to spray his hands with anti-bacterial spray. “I will be appearing via television screen to guide your experience. I have an extremely white smile. You can trust me that when I document your every movements digitally, my smile will be extremely white. The purity of your experience will match the whiteness of my teeth.” Rick Boss gives one last pearly smile, just to reassure us.
Fantastical Orwellian playscape, or lame reenactment of so many other “user-controlled” “immersive” “experiences” we’ve seen before? Worth getting a $10 ticket and checking it out. If nothing else, the Museum of Human Achievement is trying to mount some of the most adventuresome and ambitious work we’re seeing in TX right now.