Krzysztof Wodiczko

The Tijuana Projection, Mexico, 2000.
The Tijuana Projection, Mexico, 2000.

Wodiczko (wikipedia) is, and will always be, one of my all -time favourite new media artists. He is currently teaching in the Harvard Graduate School of Design. He is also someone whose name I always have to check up the spelling on each time I write about him, this post being no exception. Polish names are so difficult to spell! I have quoted him in most of my academic papers, showing how much reverence I have for his works. He is also well-known and highly regarded in academic circles, and whose works are being discussed and taught in media art faculties all around the world, including that in LASALLE College of the Arts, Singapore, where I study.

His oeuvre consists of large-scale video projections onto the facades of public buildings monuments whose themes reflect on “war, conflict, trauma, memory and communication”. He has a very sound methodology on how his art is created, which mediates public space into a space for art and social communication. In the Tijuana Projection (2000), marginalized women working in the factories bordering Mexico and America were invited to recount their stories of abuse and hardship. They wore a helmet which projected the image of their face onto the architectural dome of the Cultural Centre as the audience hears their stories. The audience is physically immersed within the intimate emotional space of the narrator via the projection. This allows for a emotional and cathartic experience for both audience and narrator as untold and unseen stories are surfaced within the community, hopefully bringing about positive social change through this new awareness. This is one example of art at its best.

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