Data, parameters, complex operations and random processes materialise with Bit and Do human dream of machines kinetic installations, conceived by artist Jonghong Park.
Bit represents an apparently random process but that can be mathematically described by a function called Markov’s Chain.
The artist explains how mechanical devices work: “Each machine consists of ‘information’ engraved on the read head and an ‘event’ caused by the operation of the motor. Machines are linked together based on a Markov chain algorithm to influence events, and eventually we can predict which of the four machines will move in the next turn.”
The work represents the complexity of the world, formed by systems, layers and networks apparently separated but subtly interlaced.
The installation Do human dream of machines, instead, tells us about the ever-closer link between man and machine. As historians Beatriz Colomina and Mark Wigley recounted at the 2016 Istanbul Biennial, entitled “Are we human?”, technology manipulates man as the latter manipulates things he creates.
This two-way relationship is represented by Jonghong Park with a loop: “The installation is made of eight coolers, which are equipped with a miniature harmonica generating sound when the cooler is activated. Each module has a built-in microphone, which recognizes the specific note of each harmonica. When the microphone recognises the specified note, the fingers stop the sound by pressing the center of the cooler. If the microphone does not hear any sound, the fingers return to their original positions. The cooler constantly generates sound, and the fingers constantly stop the cooler,” says the artist.