Shadow Bag, the awareness of the body on the screen

Shadow Bag

Normally there’s an individual perception of our own shadow? What’s the relationship between the body and its projection in space? This is the area of interest Shadow Bag deals with. It’s an installation by Scott Snibbe, that through a complex system of videoprojections involves the body of the spectator with a reactive attitude. Everytime a visitor walks in the area illuminated by the projector, his shadow is captured and re-projected on a screen, triggering an unpredictable series of interactions and behaviors. Sometimes there’s no feedback, sometimes the shadows are wandering from side to side, sometimes they behave like mirrors. When the spectator’s movements cross one of the projections, it suddenly collapses o simply dissolves. The work’s title is inspired by the Junghian theory of the body’s shadow: it is compared to a bag that contains all the human animal instincts and goes further wondering about the social fallout of this hypothesis. Through the project’s interactive principle, Snibbe dig up the complexity of the individual behaviors in front of our own (or another) projected alter-ego. But he also promotes the interdependence feeling and the friendly interaction amongst foreigners, improving also the visitors’ focus on the self. The sense of the work is constructed by the participants through a body awareness process and all its expressions. Quoting the words of the philosopher Merleau Ponty, the body is the privileged access to the world: “The body in the world has a similar role of the heart in the organism: it continuously keeps the visible spectacle alive, it animates it and it feeds it from within, establishing a symbiotic system with it.”

Francesca Tomassini