"Future Tense" features evocative storytelling, dreamlike landscapes, futuristic visions, and perhaps what one might even consider strange predictions or fortune-telling of one’s own hereafter—all envisioned within and experienced through one of the most iconic interfaces in literature and film, the iconic, nostalgic Crystal Ball. The crystal ball—also known as an orbuculum—dates back to the 1st Century AD, and is famous as the subject of a Grimm’s fairy tale, as well as for warning Dorothy about the wicked witch in The Wizard of Oz. It has the enviable power to see worlds far away—and even more magically, predict the future.
The Future Tense Crystal Ball, a collaborative work by inventors, technologists and artists JD Beltran and Scott Minneman, marries the traditional form of the classic crystal ball with state-of-the-art custom electronics, sensors, optics, 4K video (displayed via a retina screen), special visual effects, and compelling, evocative visual storytelling and imagery. Viewers peer into the large, mystical crystal ball to see immersive stories, mesmerizing landscapes, and momentary glimpses of dreamlike journeys. Peering into it evokes curiosity, surprise, wonder, and more. And then, with a wave your hand—a new adventure and experience appears.
The imagery can be a brief, cryptic scene, a visual short story, a time lapse of an exotic landscape, a mysterious panorama, or a momentary glimpse into another life—offering myriad visual and emotional surprises. 365 different filmic “glimpses”—one for each day of the year—appear in random order. Hence, every day, the viewer witnesses something different, and leaves with a different lens on the world, their upcoming day, or even their future.
MEDIA: 8" Crystal Sphere, Wood-framed base, retina display, custom sensors, software, and electronics.