Pendulum Project

2017 - Current

In fall 2017, I started an experimental research about time called Pendulum Project. This research led to develop a musical installation Time Machine as a heuristic device to explore the state of trance. Time Machine has been reiterated in many different ways and documented in every process.

Before Pendulum Project, I did several other projects inspired by scientific and philosophical ideas. One of them investigated my personal dilemma over the intellectual and moral authority between science and Christianity.

Dealing with this conflict through my artistic practice, I learned the transformative power of art that can radically transform the identity of the creator. This experience manifested into an installation called The Synthesis.

This portfolio aims to illustrate in-depth how Pendulum Project has developed

as an integral part of my practice and extended to psychoanalysis and shamanism through diverse media.

Dreaming Future, 2017

First automatic drawing in Pendulum Project

Approach

Pendulum Project began with my life-long curiosity in the nature of time. By leveraging the transformative power of art, I wanted to build my own devise to explore time and come up with a conclusion that would lead to meaningful enlightenment.

On the Horizon, 2017

Jeju Island

The perception of distinction between past and future creates a sense of chronological order. This psychological agent embraces the perception of polarity in every natural phenomenon. Albert Einstein famously called such distinction, “a stubbornly persistent illusion.” Without this illusion, however, we would be forever lost in timeless chaos. 

Asteroids of Memory, 2016

found objects

One of the common experiences that we all have is childhood amnesia. We normally do not have access to those infantile memories. During this period, we must experience time very differently, intuitively unified with nature. There is no such illusion that disguises us from the nature. As growing up, we gradually exile ourselves from this primitive psyche.

Archetypal Home, 2017

soil and wood

Could we somehow go back to our primitive psyche? What creates the illusion of distinction in time? How can it be destroyed again? 

Circulation of Matters, 2016

recycled materials

A Cubic Pendulum

I fabricated a 9" cubic pendulum by casting concrete and designed a performative installation, Birth of Time. This work examines the kinetic motion of the cubic pendulum as well as its potential psychic effect to access the unconscious on a collective scale. 

Birth of Time, 2017

concrete, chain, metal sheet, MDF, hardware and caster wheels

I found the motion of pendulum simple and beautiful. The consistent exchange of potential and kinetic energy created a sense of movement. This

resembled the behavior of our psyche as a constant flux between memory and imagination, creating a sense of present.

Man of Clock, 2017

Pneumatic Pendulum

Breathing is one of the most critical and explicit regulations for life. It is the most intimate biological time. Using air as primary force, the cubic pendulum develops into an autonomous agent that moves by itself. This is the first prototype of the pneumatic pendulum using a solenoid air valve and found objects.

After prototyping, I started to design with three major considerations:

  • functional (air outlets and sensors) 

  • concrete cube (with an interior space)

  • minimal form

This concrete cube has an interior space to conceal the pneumatic system inside. A metal square tube provides a pathway for the air hose and DC power supply to the interior space. 

The pneumatic system includes a TIP module, Arduino, photocell, and 12V DC Solenoid Air Valve (4 way 2 position with 1/2" NPT).  I also designed and fabricated a customized mounted-bearings using aluminum.

Gravity Engine, 2017 

Architecture

When I was a child, I spent most of my time at the playground. It was an incredible learning place for experimentation, collaboration, and competition. Sometimes I go back to the playground in my childhood hometown to recall faded memories. The place where I used to imagine so many possibilities now became a tiny time capsule. When it came to designing the architectural body of the pneumatic pendulum, I wanted to dissolve this feeling of looking back at my small playground. 

The structure is composed of five modulars while securing the dynamic motion of pneumatic pendulum and providing space for the 2-gallons air compressor and other necessary electronics.

This instrument called Time Space is an experimental space using light and motion as a medium for communication. In the back, there is a peephole

where you can observe the incoming light which starts to blink when the pendulum moves.

The Observer, 2017 

Symphony of Time Machine

My initial approach to the Pendulum Project mainly prioritized the function of Time Machine to access our primitive psyche through a collective hypnotherapy using a pendulum. The profound aesthetic phenomena were the musical elements of the kinetic dynamics. In the following semester,

extended my research into experimental sound, resonance, vibration, and transduction.

 

Inspired by synesthetic effects of LSD, I also created an installation called TAKELSD, in addition to a new sonic sculpture, The Activator, as an extension of Time Machine.

This sculpture, called The Activator is an autonomous singularity that 

mediates between the audience and Time Machine via sound and light. The Activator invites the audience as supreme participants initiating the performance of Time Machine.

This sonic module functions as a resonator of digital sounds to create unique 

mechanical percussions by using sound transducers customized with a 

feedback system using a pair of speakers, amps, and piezo microphones.

 

This sonic system automatically starts to operate with LED when the ultrasonic module detects the proximity of the audience within 5 ft. 

Also, the performance of the pneumatic pendulum has upgraded with a new set of code adjusting the air blasts to the right timings. This set of air blasts creates percussive rhythms:

 

A total of three sets of 7 air blasts at 0:00, 1:08, and 2:56

within 3 minutes and 30 seconds of performance

This is finalized video/audio documentation of the Symphony of Time Machine at the Flax Space of SAIC in Chicago.

Please note that this is sound art

(Using headphone is recommended)

Symphony of Time Machine performs to synthesize a musical bridge to our primitive psyche to deeply sympathize with the sensation of timelessness

By empowering the shamanistic authority within ourselves, one becomes a supreme participant of the symphony which aims to transcend the illusion of distinction between past, present, and future. The audience may awake from the ordinary reality to a such hyperpresent where the ephemerality becomes an infinite dimension of space and time, transcending the parameter of our consciousness. 

Conclusion

The ultimate goal of Pendulum Project is to invent musical instruments for the human mind and body to transcend the illusion of polarity, eventually life and death. For the past two years, Pendulum Project branched out into a deeper investigation of my identity through diverse media and extensive research in psychology and shamanism (see Telepathy and Landscapes)

While writing the poem Genesis Trilogy in London, I had a peculiar psychic experience of conceiving the inner voice corresponding to a state of mild trance. Since then, the voice of this psychological agent has manifested into various forms of dialogue through sculptural and painting practicesThis 

experience also led to a major transformation process of Time Machine.

Time Machine is now based in Brooklyn, New York. 

This is the latest version of Time Machine after the transformation.

© 2020 Hosu Lee. All rights reserved.