Shock control regression adaptation at Program Gallery, Berlin

In the Raurouw architecture collective's installation, lasers' light activated by the movement of visitors create pressure-filled atmosphere changes.

18 sharp green lasers criss-cross over the central space of Program gallery in Berlin. The lines are in constant flux; programmed to create abject atmospheric conditions, specifically the "four stages of mourning" as determined by German theologian Yorick Spiegel.

The project is a work by newly formed young architecture collective Raurouw, whose name has its etymological roots in the germano-romanic-greek term for both mourning and wild. They have used the lasers' light as a way of creating pressure-filled atmosphere changes without using physical materials. Activated by the movement of visitors in the gallery, the phase changes suggest and anticipate the shifts in social and spatial relations both between the visitors and the exhibition space.

The phases, shock, control, regression and adaptation are created by varying intensity of the lasers, which are all reflected by strategically placed mirrors, and deflected by the movement of people in the space. In shock, beams are projected like spikes from one area of the room into a large swath of space, for control a large rectilinear shape allows people to pass through it, regression spans the entire room, weaving the light between visitors who instinctively stand in small clusters.

Carson Chan, curator and co-director of the gallery explains the effect: "The lasers are position to form spaces and in the interaction between the visitor and the lasers, the environment becomes responsive to movement. Visitors were also given small mirrors with which to alter the directions of the beams and this was used to great effect during the opening when we had a live electric guitar improvised performance by Trevor Lee Larson, guitarist for [Berlin-based band], Circle Square." Beatrice Galilee/

Program is a nonprofit project aimed at testing the disciplinary boundaries of architecture through collaborations with other fields. Initiated in 2006 by Carson Chan and Fotini Lazaridou-Hatzigoga. Program provides a discursive platform for artists, architects, critics and curators to explore ideas through exhibitions, performances, workshops, lectures, and residencies. Program intends to enrich and broaden our definitions of architecture, and to challenge traditional, domesticated modes of architectural practice and representation. Developing each project independent of an overarching agenda, Program is striving to diversify the ways of understanding and making architecture. Central to the project is to engage the discourse with emerging creative processes that activate the space between pure theoretical research, professional praxis and architecture's social role.

shock control regression adaptation
at PROGRAM__initiative for art and architecture collaborations, Berlin, Germany
July 17 – August 20, 2010

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