Urban Interface Berlin – Exposure

It took me ages to come up with the second part of Urban Interface Berlin. The event ended a few days ago but i thought it would be worth waiting for some proper documentation of Exposure as the images i took of the installation are -to say the least- pathetic.

0exposu11.jpgExposure monochromatic posters looked like the covers of mainstream magazines, the bars closing a prison cell or thumb prints. Installed along a segment of a passageway, they could only be enjoyed at night.

When a pedestrian passed by the poster, a distance sensor, connected to a tele-objective camera, activates the flash of the camera, casting the person’s shadow momentarily on the poster. The poster’s graphics being printed with fluorescent ink, shadows are captured and become an integrated element of the poster that gradually fades away. Simple, immediate and effective.


As Jussi Ängeslevä and Richard The explain, the technology is used by science museums around the world, and artists such as Random-International. The artists/designers combined the simple technological principle with traditional poster design, where static graphics are augmented with the viewer’s silhouette to create playful situations and weave micro narratives for the unsuspecting public as they navigate through the dark alleys.

The work comments on the effects social softwares have on us. The online self-presentation being an idealisation of the reality, and only existing through the aid of the service providers. By reminding the traces and constraints the license terms levy upon us, Exposure brings the online discourse to physical space in the form of a poster series. The work is also a comment on the omnipresent cameraphone, a “little brother” who is relentlessly prying on the unexpected moment of embarrasment or shock. Exposure’s motion sensing flash lights relate to this “everyman paparazzi”.

Related: SonarMatica has a fantastic line-up of projects playing with shadow this year.
Previously: Tool’s Life, Bugs, errors, and weird behaviors, Takashi’s Seasons, Biophilia, Streetclock, Shadow, Visceral Cinema: Chien , Reflective stencils, etc.