I would like to believe in magic right now, the magic of matches and fireflies. A stroll through Jim Campbell’s fleeting installation in Asia would stir such wonder: the American artist has suspended a grid of 2,000 LED bulbs over Edinburgh Place in Hong Kong. Luminous and immersive, “Scattered Light” invites passers-by to wend their way through the pointillist cloud, past shadowy forms cast by light pulses.
Having toured the world, “Scattered Light” stops in Hong Kong as part of Fleeting Light, the 4th Large-Scale Interactive Media Arts Exhibition, on view through October 12. Campbell’s three-part contribution also includes: “Light Matter,” a gallery show spanning three decades; and “Eternal Recurrence” on the façade of the International Commerce Center, a 118-story canvas on which Campbell created a light screen for towering swimmers to stroke up and back, their vertical laps without start or finish.
“I believe that the trajectory of technological media in our culture towards higher resolution and more dimensions does not always reveal or express more,” Campbell has said. “All of the excess ‘information’ that is given to us and that our minds have to analyze can mask some of the more subtle perceptual sensory processes. It has been scientifically shown in many different ways that we see and process a lot more of our surroundings than we are consciously aware of. It is these more primitive perceptual pathways that I am interested in walking.” Me too. And so I go walking.