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Rafael Lozano-Hemmer: Pulse
In the Hirshhorns largest interactive technology exhibition to date, three major installations from Rafael Lozano-Hemmers Pulse series will come together for the artists DC debut. A Mexican Canadian artist known for straddling the line between art, technology, and design, Lozano-Hemmer will fill the Museums entire Second Level with immersive environments that use heart-rate sensors to create kinetic and audiovisual experiences from visitors own biometric data. Over the course of six months, Pulse will animate the vital signs of hundreds of thousands of participants.
With Lozano-Hemmers trademark sensitivities to audience engagement and architectural scale, each installation captures biometric signatures and visualizes them as repetitive sequences of flashing lights, panning soundscapes, rippling waves, and animated fingerprints. These intimate portraits, or snapshots, of electrical activity are then added to a live archive of prior recordings to create an environment of syncopated rhythms. At a time when biometry is increasingly used for identification and control, this data constitutes a new way of representing both anonymity and community.
While reflecting on the upcoming exhibition, Hirshhorn Director Melissa Chiu offered the following: Lozano-Hemmer will activate the Museum like never before His hypnotic installations invite museum visitors to participate in a one-of-a-kind experience while addressing complex themes surrounding agency, mortality, and ownership.