interactive video installation, 2010
“Leander…, who was always thinking not of tomorrow, but of the day after tomorrow, was surprised to discover that his father would eat one spoon of beans, while he, Leander, would scoop and eat three of them.”
M. Pavich “The inner side of the wind”
Fall Control by Albena Baeva is a partial fulfillment of the requirements for the MA degree in Digital Arts at the National Academy of Arts in Sofia, Bulgaria. The interactive instalation visually recreates meeting a past moment. Visitors are invited to jump on a metal framed bed. Across from the bed is a video projection. When a visitor gets on the bed and start jumping, she sees a projection of her own figure next to a recording of the figure of the person who jumped on the bed before her. When the current visitor jumps high, the visitor from the past slows down her pace of jumping and vice versa. When the visitor jumps to a certain height the two figures on the screen switch places, only to separate again when they meet.
According to Einstein, time takes a different course depending on your own position in space. Stanford scholar Ronald Gruber differentiated subjective time from objective. St. Augustine proved that the present moment does not exist, and Serbian writer Milorad Pavich described people as living at different paces.
The act of jumping puts the participant in a state of zero gravity, temporarily liberating her from the laws of time, and provides a chance to interact with the subjective time of others. Returning to a past moment, visitors get closer to the subjective present time of previous participants. A game of manipulation connects various audience members, placing them in one environment, though they might have never physically been in the same place.
In Fall Control, Baeva refuses to accepts that time is a constant. She layers multiple flows of time , each of them is as real as the other. The piece reveals the social plan of time. It brings us together, allowing us to meet, but at the same time dooms us to constant separation.