In 1938 architect Joseph Bazzeghin lobbied for permission to erect roller coasters on the Golden Gate and Bay bridges. His plans were not approved. I made Suspended Series in response to a fantasy never achieved, to imaginary rides driven after paying a $3.00 toll.
Suspended is an experiential piece, the entire series plays as a large screen 22:00 minute loop in a screening room, fully enveloping the viewer in image and sound. It is a four-piece rumination on commuting, perception, and propulsion. Each track transforms an ordinary drive over a bridge into rhythmic, hypnotic experiences conjuring scientific diagrams, images of flight, the future, and the cosmos. These analog / digital combinations skip and crackle through time, slipping between present and future, image and imagination, obfuscation and revelation.
In Suspended I drive back and forth repeatedly across four bay area bridges. The mundane drive evokes a meditative and hallucinatory state. By filming this process I attempt to capture these conditions. I work the audio and textured surfaces in layers to evoke a physical manifestation of the visions stemming from repetition. While giving weight to these ethereal conditions I confront the actual dullness of traffic—car, asphalt, stop and go bumper to bumper. The architecture of each bridge determines the camera angle and the characteristics of the vision: #1—San Mateo Bridge—sky, #2—San Francisco Bay Bridge—flight, #3—Dumbarton Bridge—horizon and velocity, and #4—Golden Gate Bridge—suspension.
The bridges traversed reflect an ambiguous zone, they are the spaces between two pieces of land, the industrial connectors allowing commuters access from one space to another. As I cross each wondrous engineering feat I ask: What does it mean to sit still, my body barely moving within the armor of the automobile, while the car propels forward over 55 mph? What visions do I see when I watch the landscape hurtle past the windows of my car? Will we eventually travel via hovercraft? What impact does velocity have on my internal organs? Who is driving next to me? Will I ever drive fast enough to experience a time shift? When cars are obsolete, could this bridge be repurposed as a roller coaster?
I am fascinated by the intersection of the real and the imagined in everyday actions. I am interested in deciphering and giving form to that murky sphere between desire and realization of desire, the imagined and the manifestation of the imagination, and common living space versus televised and/or cinematic space. In that murky realm there dwells an ambiguous zone called the manufacture of fantasy. In this zone there is a constructive and destructive act. Whether the creative act is undertaken by artists, filmmakers, the Hollywood machine, or commercial advertisers something is altered, something is manipulated. How does the manufacture of fantasy and imagination distort and influence perception?