perspectives [macro]

solo exhibition
city constructed from sleeping brain activity data (2013) + perspectives [macro] (2013)

perspectives [macro] is the culmination of a long period of work and one component of the larger series perspectives, which in turn forms part of the larger cycle of works invisible and visible systems of networks.

The concept for perspectives coalesced from an increasing awareness of individuals’ existence as being part of greater and larger networks or systems. Smaller entities that form the network enable powerful and important combinations, and at the core level, networks and systems are critical for all atomic, biological and social structures. These systems sometimes appearing so large as to the point where the importance of the individual is removed. The work was also influenced by an increasing interest in the Einsteinian conception of gravity, being that each individual object exerts forces in both space and time, and that perception of time is relative to surrounding forces.

The research process for this work involved looking at numerous data sets, interaction networks, physics engines, behavioural simulations, gravitational systems, algorithmic processes and translations of data and media, while also further developing computer programming techniques and experimenting with new media formats in the use of multi-channel video and 3d printing.

perspectives [macro] builds upon previous works consciousness and multiplicity by continuing to investigate unseen data, unconscious thought, number, and scale, but also by varying the viewing point of these between the greater network and representations of the forces acting upon individuals. These works seek to view, analyse, illustrate, identify and ponder the multitude of networks and systems surrounding us through translation of these seen and unseen processes into abstract, sensory representations.


- Nov/Dec 2013, free range gallery, Perth, Western Australia
- Sep/Oct 2014, Fremantle Arts Centre, city constructed from sleeping brain activity data shown as part of the FAC Print Award, receiving a judges ‘Highly Commended’

Perspectives [macro]-10-Photography By Dan McCabe

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perspectives [macro] (2013)
5 channel video, 2 channel sound, 15:15 loop

Taking various different network systems as the starting point for the video and sound content, this work attempts to map and illustrate connections between isolated entries of data.

This work draws largely on data sets of sleeping brain activity, public transport networks and human DNA patterns, as well as algorithmic flocking and gravitational simulations. The content is a combination of computer-generated visualisations, archive footage and 3D graphics.

Much of the content found in this work began as trying to conceive of ways to express something non-linear in a durational context. This led to creating various programs that would draw, sonify and react to this data. These were then rendered, manipulated and edited in order to be presented in a temporal format, and in doing so also attempting to maintain some aspects of non-linearity and representing time, not as a fixed constant, but as something that ebbs and flows relative to the viewer.

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city constructed from sleeping brain activity data (2013)
3D printed sculptures, custom plinth

This set of sculptures was created using data collected from sleeping brain activity that has been converted into 3D meshes, rendered using computer software and then printed. This data presents a non-narrative view of the thought activity occurring in sleeping individuals. Abstract relationships are formed – the constructed ‘buildings’ are at times peculiar, dark and dream-like, and other times reminiscent of modernist architecture, drawing links between abstract thought, creativity and conversions between media.

The work is inspired by Carl Jung’s writings surrounding dreams and the commonly expressed view that the internet is a repository and library for outsourced thoughts and memories. This work addresses this idea by procuring this data from the expanse of the internet and connecting multiple individuals’ brain activity to form a 3-dimensional array, linking the collective unconscious of the internet with sound, video and physical structures.

The creation of this work was also highly influenced by the text Invisible Cities by postmodernist author Italo Calvino, as I was drawn to the individual abstract impressions of imaginary, impossible and dystopian structures that were at simultaneously fictitious and vivid representations of subconscious constructions.

Perspectives [macro]-03-Photography By Dan McCabe

Perspectives [macro]-08-Photography By Dan McCabe

Perspectives [macro]-01-Photography By Dan McCabe






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Installation photography by Dan McCabe, model view by Sohan Ariel Hayes