rock garden

Rock Garden is a projection-mapped video installation and soundscape that premiered at the Borealis Festival of Light in Seattle, October 2018. It was winner of the popular vote for Light art installations at the festival.

rock garden from janet galore on Vimeo.

I wanted to do an intimate piece that blended physical and digital perceptions. I’ve always loved rocks, and have done other work that imbues inanimate objects with a character. My hope was that a rock garden of eyes could be perceived as one entity, or as a collection of multiple entities, vibrating between the two. I tried to enhance that feeling with the way I filmed and animated the eyes, leaving natural blinks and differences in timing that allowed each rock creature to be its own. I was pleased with how the shape, texture, and color of each rock blended with the animated eye to create a unique character. As with a lot of my work, the soundtrack is designed to create a strong mood. The soundscape drifts between meditative and creepy, interacting with the actions and emotions of the rocks. 

It was so fun to see all the attendees of the festival –many who didn’t seem to be typical art-audiences– interact with the piece. Reactions ranged from fascination and wonder to outright disgust (some even covering their eyes and running out the door!). It was all good in my book. One person observed that people gathered around the installation like a campfire, which made me happy. 

Attendees circled around the installation at Borealis Festival of Light

Special thanks to Demi Raven, who was not only an eyeball actor, but also designed and fabricated the projection rigging for the installation. Also thanks to the other eyeball actors– Eyerusalem Dessie, Susie Lee, Stafford Squier, Annik Stahl, Meghan Trainor; and thanks to Mary Coss, who curated the light installations at Borealis.