Earth Projects: Haines & Hinterding’s Geology

What happens when the earth is no longer trustworthy? When the very ground we stand on transforms into a living being? In Canterbury, New Zealand, in September 2010, the earth gave one of its necessary shudders. Solid became liquid, known environments mutated and a syntax of rupture emerged. The quake caused widespread damage and set off a sequence of more than 20,000 aftershocks, including one in February 2011 that resulted in the deaths of 185 people. Amid the early sequence of aftershocks, Australian artists David Haines and Joyce Hinterding visited the Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū and collected electromagnetic field recordings from inside the gallery. As the earth settled into patterns of movement, Haines and Hinterding tracked bodies and energies in space.


Image: Joyce Hinterding and David Haines Geology (2015) real-time 3D environment, 2 x HD projections, game engine, motion sensor, spatial 3D audio. Commissioned by the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia, supported by Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna O Waiwhetu, Christchurch New Zealand. Reproduced with permission of the artists.

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Dr Susan Ballard is a writer from Aotearoa New Zealand who teaches contemporary art and media at the University of Wollongong where she is also the co-director of the Centre for Critical Creative Practice (C3P). She is currently co-authoring 100 Atmospheres, a book about art, media and writing in the Anthropocene.

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