An installation by Romain Tardy
Sound design by Loran Delforge
Software development: Hand Coded
Production: MTA Festival
Line producer: Jesler Amarins
Sky desert, Hebei, China, May 2017.
S.A.T is a captivating large-scale digital art installation designed to grace the vast expanse of Sky Desert in Hebei province, China. Comprising 72 interconnected modules, this immersive installation offers a unique experience during both daytime and nighttime.
In daylight, the modules transform into mirrors, elegantly reflecting the sky and forging a poetic connection between the earthly and the celestial realms. As night falls, the modules come alive with illuminating visual patterns, enveloping the surroundings with a mesmerizing display. The installation, with its minimalist yet grand design, engulfs viewers in an intense audio-visual journey that can be witnessed from a distance.
Visitors are invited to connect their phones to a local Wi-Fi network, which unveils a reinterpretation of three significant messages transmitted into outer space during the 1970s. These include the Pioneer plate (Pioneer space probes, 1972 and 1973), the interstellar radio message sent from the Arecibo radio telescope (1974), and the LAGEOS plate (LAGEOS space probe, 1976). As visitors connect, their phone's IP address briefly appears on the installation, visible from high above, before transforming into a captivating light sequence that visualizes the data exchange between the local server and their phone, presenting the animated messages.
S.A.T serves as an evocative tribute to the telescope fields, reminiscent of locations like ALMA in the Atacama Desert, Chile, where humanity's exploration of the universe takes shape through the lens of human perspective.