Thursday, May 24, 2007

Flowing Visuals

Airports are wonderful places to watch people. Thousands of humans herd together in these highly controlled artificial environments from where they board airplanes that spread them in all directions across the planet. There is so much going on in these ports: arrivals, departures, hurrying, waiting, feeding, sleeping, working, boredom, excitement, anticipation, frustration, .... It can be quite entertaining to spend the waiting time between flights by just observing the activity and non-activity of people on the go. Nowadays with all the electronic gadgets we have at our disposal, it is interesting to see the new patterns of behavior they cause on their users. I think of cell phones and electronic notebooks as pacifiers for grown-ups, just like the TV's that are blaring the latest news in each waiting area - as if travelers wouldn't be able to function properly if they missed something.
I like the original use of TV screens as art at the George Bush Intercontinental Airport in Houston, TX, in the photos below. They are lined up to form a frieze in an oval rotunda, displaying constantly changing computer-coordinated images. In the first picture they were all showing a red apple. A minute later, the apples had changed to green.

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