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Energie_Passagen [Energy_Passages] – Reading and (De)Scribing the City

Language is intellectual energy which shapes a city. The conversations of its inhabitants and the language of politics and of the media represent flows of energy. They form the city’s invisible architecture which is »measured« and made visible in this installation.

Starting point for »Energie_Passagen« are texts taken from a mass medium, the daily newspaper. An automated computer process analyses the German newspaper, »Süddeutsche Zeitung«, and reduces it to catchwords. The terms which are filtered in this process are then projected as the »information flow« onto the square “Salvatorplatz” in Munich.

As a visitor, you have a choice of terms which you can select
and »through« into the flow. Thus, movements of text are initiated and links between the terms become apparent. The resulting networks of terms create contextual links and new meanings which differ from the original linear texts. Computer voices immediately react to your »input« and accompany you in an echo of many voices.

In addition, a world map visualizes the path through the geographic landscape of news which the visitor takes based upon her/his choice. A developing linear illustration emphasizes the links between local location and global events.

The visible result of this interactive process is the »Living Newspaper«. Its dynamically generated texts are also projected onto the »information cube«. The de-construction of the newspaper based upon the fragmentation and transformation of its original content facilitates a new form of reading and understanding. The flow’s artificial voices invite you to discover new contexts.

»Energie_Passagen« demonstrates how meaning is generated by difference and offers a sensuously perceptible scope of action which releases a new communication potential.

A project of the City Munich, Kulturreferat & the artists within the initiative of »Ortstermine 2004 – art in public space«

Further information and images:

Initiator of the Exhibition:

Fraunhofer IMK

Fraunhofer IMK Mars

Technology Partners: