connecting the dots: about the images
The image streams are intended to abstractly express the type of activity characteristic to each brainwave state (Beta, Alpha, and Theta). Beta is the "normal" state, in which we listen, interpret, and talk. Alpha is the creative state, in which we associate, interpolate, and consciously ponder. Theta is the dreaming state, in which we hallucinate and imagine.

It occurred to me that these states might correlate to different ways of processing visual information. I have used television as the constant, and position the range of our mental experience relative to it.


Beta is television viewed from a conventional distance, as when it's used in a home environment to gather information. (The home environment framing these images is actually Farrally Lounge here at the Banff Centre, where resident artists gather to watch tv.) Alpha is the screen viewed too close for narrative meaning, but from which evocative images trigger personal associations. Theta is the television's reflection viewed in the nighttime windows of the lounge, ghostly images floating outside the television frame, against a nightscape of footprints, stars, and trees.

These images have been preloaded in the studio and are triggered by Max software, according to the current brainwave state of each participant. On the monitor before the participants, the screen is split, so the left half of the left participant's image is joined by the right half of his or her partner's.

When a participant is drawn into his or her partner's brainwave state, the images begin to match up.

--Emily Hartzell