Pentimento

Project Overview

  1. Dennis Del Favero
  2. ARC Project Title: iiC_inema X00001590
  3. 2002
  4. Interactive Video Installation

Pentimento is a computer based interactive video installation utilizing an innovative vision based movement detection system developed by the computer scientist Andre Bernhardt. The story recreates events leading up to the discovery of a decomposed and unidentified body on the outskirts of Sydney. Following the discovery, a brother and sister, who are incestuously involved with each other, are arrested. They accuse each other of murdering their father.

The installation takes the form of an octagonal room. Each of the four walls in this octagon operate as an independent screen and acoustic system. Pentimento works in a manner similar to an interactive jigsaw puzzle, somewhat in the tradition of the computer puzzle Tetris. There are a number of narrative layers and points of view within the layers. To begin with, in the first narrative layer there are two versions of both the brother and the sister, twins in a sense, a guilty brother and an innocent brother, a guilty sister and an innocent sister. In the second narrative layer there is a guilty father and an innocent father along with the Room itself, which has its own perverse view of the proceedings. All the points of view are equally credible.

The installation walls operate either independently or in synchrony, depending on the viewers’ movements. If viewers restrict their movements to a series of stationery points within the room they are able to activate the first layer of narrative, for example either the innocent brother’s or innocent sister’s point of view. If viewers maintain a constant movement through the space they are able to activate, in addition to the first narrative layer, a second layer of viewpoints, namely the father’s and that of the room. Narrative in Pentimento becomes a complex interplay of these contending points of view and forms of interaction, a voyage in search of a point of stillness in a sea of perplexing and fluctuating possibilities.

pentimento_axo
Pentimento axonometric view
pentimento_big
Pentimento installation view

Exhibitions

  • Sprengel Museum, Hannover, 2005
  • Ivan Dougherty Gallery, Sydney, 2004
  • Australian Centre for the Moving Image, Melbourne; Galerie Andreas Binder, Munich; Kiasma, Helsinki; ICC (InterCommunicationsCentre), Tokyo, 2003
  • ZKM, Karlsruhe, 2002