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Insight: ‘Dataatadata, Everything and Nothing’, by Chris Klapper & Patrick Gallagher

Text by CLOT Magazine

Dataatadata: Everything and Nothing is an immersive sound installation created by Brooklyn-based artists Chris Klapper and Patrick Gallagher at The Invisible Dog Gallery (New York). With Dataatadata: Everything and Nothing, the artists create a setting for a large-scale mandala in the gallery space’s centre. Surrounded by monumental sculptures depicting data chosen from numerous particle collisions, mapped video projections and eight-channel sound composition, the peaceful expression of the 280 sqf mandala takes centre stage. It centres around a 30-day performance and creating an intricate, large-scale mandala of imagery of a particle collision from Fermilab in 1978.

The universe is expanding because almost every galaxy is moving away from one another. This idea of infinity is at the centre of the intellectual process that brought Dataatadata: Everything and Nothing to life.  Klapper and Gallagher tell over the email that “the installation, as a whole, centres on grasping the immeasurable concept of negative infinity. It is a meditation on a massive idea that is impossible to grasp.

That the universe gets exponentially larger as we begin to understand how infinitesimally small it gets by orders of magnitude”. They chose the process of creating the mandala out of hand-dyed marble dust because of the “inherent poetic expression of time, impermanence, memory and transformation”. For them, the mandala is a metaphor for the atoms, the infinitesimal particles that makeup everything.

Dataatadata: Everything and Nothing is an immersive experience of sound and projected spaces that, throughout the 30-day performance, “unfolds into an experience where viewers and the audience lose themselves for a period of time”, they told us. The viewer can be sat and experience the hypnotic tapping and scraping sounds as the artists sculpt the mandala and how that interacts with the 3-dimensional sound element of the installation. But with all mandalas, Dataatadata: Everything and Nothing will be destroyed once it is complete at the closing event on NYE.

Klapper and Gallagher’s creative process spans from sound, sculpture, and mapping to photography, data, and digital new media to express ideas on a human scale. They are interested in new technologies, handmade techniques, and how they work together.

At Dataatadata: Everything and Nothing, they have incorporated programmed graphics, projection mapping, and spatial sound installation. Today we engage with technology in a way we couldn’t even image three decades ago; we make connections and share experiences with people we don’t know.

(Photos courtesy of the artists)
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