Andrea Polli, Joe Gilmore: N.

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Creation Year:



    Computer projection and sound


Artist Statement:

    “What may not be expected in a country of eternal light? I may there discover the wondrous power which attracts the needle and may regulate a thousand celestial observations that require only this voyage to render their seeming eccentricities consistent forever.” – Mary Shelley, Frankenstein The North Pole. 90 degrees north. A point where the spinning of the Earth slows to zero, where every direction points South, and the sun rises and sets just one time each year. The North Pole is a symbol of the fusion of opposites, combining natural beauty and brutality, “the last imaginary place on Earth.” N., by examining the North Pole in real time, expresses the isolation and environmental extremes of this remote region and addresses the importance of the region to the global ecosystem. N. is an ongoing, evolving composition. Because it is directly tied to the turbulent weather of the Pole, the composition is ever changing, transforming in completely unexpected ways. N. unfolds and evolves on a climatological temporal scale, far beyond an individual human lifetime. N. was made possible, in part, by a 2005 Lovebytes Festival Commission, Sheffield, UK. It was selected from over 2,600 entries for the renowned VIPER International Awards and was featured at the VIPER International Festival for Film and New Media in Basel, Switzerland. It was also featured in The Drop, an exhibition of works addressing global water supply at ExitArt, New York, and in an exhibition of Polli’s works at the Beall Center for Art + Technology.

Technical Information:

    N. presents a sonification of Arctic weather data modeled specifically for this project by Patrick Market, meteorologist and snow and ice specialist at the University of Missouri, and imagery from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Arctic research program in a sound and visual representation of the climate and conditions at the North Pole from 2003-2006. A portion of the sound used in N. comes from live atmospherics and global electromagnetic transmissions of lightning from the INSPIRE VLF receiver at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center. Audio engineered at Harvestworks, New York City by Ken Babb. Supported, in part, by a PSC-CUNY Research Foundation Grant.