SPRING 23, Kunsthal Aarhus, April-May 2023

Big Ear

Found footage,
LED modules, sound. 

Duration: 00:07:00

Søren Vøgg Lyster

Thanks to:
Jiawei Zheng,
Julie Eg,
Seraina Grupp,
Anne-Sophie Penney,
Jonas Jørgensen,
Lior Nønne Hansen
The work Big Ear is based on the radio signal "The Wow! signal" which was recorded at Ohio State University's observatory “Big Ear” on August 15th, 1977. The radio signal was more than 50.000 times stronger than what had previously been recorded, leading researchers to wonder if it could be a message from aliens. In the installation, the visitor experiences an interpretation of Big Ear's "flat reflector", which captured signals from the sky. An LED screen in the ratio 1:35 is programmed to flash in varying intensities based on data from the time period when "The Wow! signal" was recorded.

The light installation is synced with a video of scenes from American sci fi movies that were made in the time period of the Big Ear observatory’s existence from 1963-1998. The video is edited with a code based on the same data as the light installation and depicts different fictional interpretations of first encounters between humans and extraterrestrial beings.

Photos by Mikkel Kaldal

Installation at SPRING 23, Kunsthal Aarhus, April-May 2023