Published on March 3, 2014 | by Beau Bass

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Exhibition review: Momentum

★★★★★ 

entrance to United Visual Artists Momentum exhibition

This project is routed in sophisticated computer technology, in order to create a journey of the senses [Linwei Li]

The Curve gallery at the Barbican Centre plays host to Momentum, a new project by United Visual Artists, a London-based, multidisciplinary art practice. This is an immersive experience far from your ordinary art exhibition.

The focal point for this exhibition is the medium of light and sound; visitors walk into the space, which is concealed in darkness and mist, while 12 swinging pendulums activate light.

The concept may appear simple, but extensive research has gone into this project in order to create this poetic vision.

This instillation immediately plays on your senses. As the smell of dry ice grabs you, light from the swinging pendulums is emitted and a variety of ambient sounds are played. Despite the darkness, the space is extremely peaceful.

This project is routed in sophisticated computer technology in order to create a journey of the senses.

The pendulums have been choreographed to activate bursts of light into the space, occasionally leaving it in complete darkness for a few short seconds.

Atmosphere

Sound is a further integral part of this exhibition. The calming soundtrack, also designed by United Visual Artists, creates a meditative atmosphere using a variety of soothing noises.

The Curve gallery is a peculiar space but this actually works in its favour – visitors walk the length of the space and in between the darkness and the mist it feels like you are actually lost for a short while.

This exhibition may not be for everyone, especially considering that so much of the instillation lies within the visitor’s perspective. However, what’s most interesting about it is that it is so sensually absorbing – no two experiences are alike.

Overall this is a fascinating exhibition. Although not that visually appetising as you spend the duration in darkness, a truly meditative ambience is still created through playing on the visitors’ senses.

Momentum is on display at the Barbican’s Curve gallery until June 1, 2014.

 

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